Solomon Islands - Economic development
The government has attempted to diversify agricultural production in order to make the economy less vulnerable to world price fluctuations of such key cash crops as copra. Important development projects during the 1980s included new sawmills, a fish cannery, a spice industry, and the Lungga hydroelectric plant. Fisheries receive significant portions of development funds. A rubber industry is being developed, and plans are under way to export the indigenous ngali nut as an upscale confectionery product under the name "Solomons nut." In 1991, plans were announced for a SI $60 million hydroelectric plant on Guadalcanal, financed by the Asian Development Bank.
Foreign assistance plays an essential role in the nation's development strategy, with Australia and Japan the largest donors. In 1996, the Solomon Islands received us$46.4 million in aid. Aid is also received from the IBRD, ADB, and EC.