Registered land title holders are encouraged to partner with the Ministry of Culture and Tourism to access support for development of the land for tourism activities. The Accessing Land for Tourism Investment Facilitation (ALTIF) is a project funded by the Millennium Challenge Corporation (MCC) that aims to address land access and investment facilitation issues that have prevented Solomon Islands from reaching its potential in the tourism sector. Western province has been selected as the pilot site for the ALTIF project. Permanent Secretary in the Ministry of Culture and Tourism, Barney Sivoro said the project will also roll out to other provinces in due time.
The Ministry of Culture and Tourism was established to create an effective Government Ministry that proactively and strategically addresses the growth prospects and economic development opportunities in the tourism, cultural, arts and heritage sectors. The partnership with MCC is seen as valuable for the government as it enabled the government to address some of the longstanding issues in Solomon Islands that are seen as hindrance to the growth and development of the country. The Ministry of Culture and Tourism will lead the steering committee established to oversee the governance work of the project. “There are two components to this project. First, the land access activity will help the Solomon Islands Government to identify sites capable of attracting and supporting tourism investment; second, ALTIF will help investors succeed by ensuring ‘social license’ with local communities to ensure tenure security,” Mr. Charles Jakosa of MCC said. “The project will assist communities to be partners in land usage and be included in land usage decisions. The result will promote tenure security for investors and informed expectations of benefits among local communities.” “The second component, the investment facilitation activity, will develop a portfolio of land parcels with potential opportunities for responsible investors. It will also enhance the government’s capacity to respond to investor needs and identify potential projects that could yield the greatest benefit to Solomon Islanders by fostering local economic growth, including the expansion of employment and entrepreneurship opportunities for women.”
The MCC identified the Solomon Islands as a country partner in December 2018, and, due to delays caused by COVID-19, the MCC and the Government of Solomon Islands signed the Solomon Islands Threshold Program Grant Agreement in January 2022, formalizing a partnership that aims to encourage sustainable development and alleviate poverty. The US$20 million investment works to yield economic growth in the natural resource management and tourism sectors.