IN a first for Melanesia, financial results and other key information from Solomon Islands’ $230 million state-owned enterprise (SOE) portfolio can now be viewed online.
A website launched by the Government of Solomon Islands provides profiles of each of the country’s eight SOEs featuring their financial performance, board members, and links to relevant legislation, as well as the overall performance of Solomon Islands’ SOE portfolio. The website, developed with the support of the Asian Development Bank’s (ADB) Pacific Private Sector Development Initiative (PSDI), makes this information readily available to the public for the first time.
“This initiative is part of an ongoing program to reform Solomon Islands’ state-owned enterprises portfolio, which has seen it become one of the best performing in the region,” said Emma Fan, Regional Director of ADB’s Pacific Liaison and Coordination Office. “This website demonstrates the Government of Solomon Islands’ commitment to transparency and accountability, which we are seeing reflected elsewhere in the Pacific as more countries commit to making key information about their public enterprises available online.”
Harry Kuma, Permanent Secretary of Finance and Treasury, launched the website, which can be found at http://www.pacificsoedata.org/solomon-islands
PSDI is assisting three other Pacific countries to establish similar websites and also supported Tonga with the launch of its SOE information portal in April last year.
Solomon Islands has achieved a dramatic improvement in the performance of its SOE portfolio since 2009 and is now the most profitable in the Pacific. Between 2010 and 2014, it produced an average return of assets of 6.7% and an average return on equity of 10%, far higher than neighboring countries.
PSDI is a technical assistance facility undertaken in partnership with the governments of Australia and New Zealand, and ADB. It works with ADB’s 14 Pacific developing member countries to improve the enabling environment for business and to support inclusive, private sector-led economic growth.
ADB, based in Manila, is dedicated to reducing poverty in Asia and the Pacific through inclusive economic growth, environmentally sustainable growth, and regional integration. Established in 1966, it is owned by 67 members—48 from the region.