Solomon Airlines was the latest host of the Solomon Islands Chamber of Commerce and Industry’s (SICCI) popular networking event the Business After 5 on Friday 11th November 2022 where the National Carrier updated members of the business community.
Solomon Airlines’ Chief Executive Officer (CEO), Mr. Gus Kraus took the opportunity to provide an update on the Airlines’ network and strategy for 2023 followed by remarks from Solomon Airlines Board Chairman and SICCI Board Member, Mr Frank Wickham.
Mr Wickham stressed that the Airlines has been through many challenges due to the global pandemic but is slowly improving, as a result, the Chairman also expressed his gratitude to the Solomon Islands, Australia, and New Zealand Governments for their support during this difficult time.
The Chairman used the occasion to introduce new appointments to the Airlines Board and Management Team to the business community.
“The new appointments to our Management Team is crucial as we enter this new chapter with strong emphasis on skill and capacity development at Solomon Airlines, longer term succession and the implementation of key performance indicators.
“We continue to have challenges, but we see them as opportunities,” he said.
Mr Wickham added: “Government has been very supportive, and we believe we provide an essential service in the country that includes to the provinces and connecting Solomon Islands to the rest of the world.”
“While the Government is continuing to support us, we would also like to become efficient, maximise the revenue, cut back on costs where we can, and I have confidence on the management team and staff at the Airlines to work towards that goal,” Mr Wickham said.
It was also highlighted that work is ongoing on upgrading and improving runaways and facilities at the Henderson International Airport and provincial airfields in the provinces thanks to support from the Governments of Australia, New Zealand, Japan, and the World Bank.
Airlines CEO, Mr Kraus delivered a presentation on their strategy for 2023 as the Airlines look to maintain co-sharing partnerships with regional Airlines following a review of what’s required after the impacts of the pandemic and where the Airline currently stand and how it can control its market.
SICCI acknowledges Solomon Airlines for resuming international flights despite all the challenges faced in ensuring their fleet both domestic and international stay operational post-COVID.
From the Chamber’s perspective, this is good for both travelling passengers and businesses and the same for economic activities in Solomon Islands.
“Regular and reliable flights both domestically and internationally provides significant economic benefits to the economy and citizens,” SICCI CEO, Ms. Natalina Hong, said.
She said, transportation, in particular international flights, will go a long way in supporting and stimulating trade and tourism especially in the recovery phase following the impacts of the global pandemic.
SICCI reiterates that infrastructure remains key in the country’s economic recovery and appreciates the Government and development partners’ commitment to make sure there are supporting infrastructure like better roads are completed to compliment activities to airports and investors and visitors coming into the country.
The Business After 5 event concluded as usual with a networking session for businesses and SICCI members and a business card draw for two lucky winners of free domestic and international return tickets on any of Solomon Airlines’ routes
Solomon Islands Chamber of Commerce & Industry
1st Floor, Suite 213, Hyundai Mall,
T: (+677) 39542
T: (+677) 39543
F: (+677) 39544