Are local crafts people, especially furniture manufacturers, benefiting from the building construction growth?
One letter I wrote this week mentioned what I had been told of numerous new buildings going up in Honiara and in the many years since I left the Solomon Islands in 1999, I am sure I would hardly recognize Honiara today with much construction having occurred in the intervening years.
The thought has occurred to me, however, whether in furnishing such properties local manufacturers have had the opportunity to supply the items needed to meet the furniture and storage needs.
I very much hope that to have been the case and to illustrate my point I would like to relate a brief story.
When I was shown my office on taking up my appointment in July 1997, I found an old metal desk, two chairs and a settee, but there were no cupboards or storage shelves for files.
To quickly remedy the situation I paid a local craftsman to make me some storage cabinets for my office and a glass fronted cabinet to showcase the trophies won by the police ladies sporting teams, which was then put on display in the room at the front entrance to the Rove Police Headquarters.
The finished work equated to anything that could have been acquired from overseas and served to remind be of local talent in woodwork and carpentry.