A country intending to implement the EITI is required to undertake a number of steps before applying to become an EITI Candidate. Solomon Islands had done the steps which include:
- Issuing an unequivocal public statement of its intention to implement the EITI.
- Appointing a senior government individual to lead on the implementation of the EITI in the country.
- Showing commitment to work with civil society and companies, and establish a multi-stakeholder group to oversee the implementation of the EITI in the country; and
- The multi-stakeholder group is required to maintain a current workplan, fully costed and aligned with the reporting and Validation deadlines established by the EITI Board.
Solomon Islands has fully complied with the above four sign-up requirements. For example:
- Solomon Islands government has publically announced the country’s intention to join the EITI in August 2011 by the former Minister of Finance, Honourable Gordon Darcy Lilo following Cabinets decision on 23rd July 2011.
- The SIEITI Multi-Stakeholder Group was formed in January 2012;
- A senior government official (Mr. Harry Kuma and now McKinnie Dentana, US Economic, Ministry of Finance) was appointed as the National EITI Coordinator; and
- Solomon Islands has published its EITI Work Plan and Budget with specific targets as approved by the SIEIMNSG.
As a result, the International EITI Board accepted Solomon Islands as an EITI candidate in June 2012.
However, whether or not Solomon Island’s will be declared EITI compliant depends on the country’s EITI validation report. Validation is an essential feature of the EITI process. Its objective is to assess performance and promotes dialogue and learning at the country level. It also safeguards the integrity of the EITI by ensuring Solomon Islands is adhering to the global EITI standard. Validation is an external, independent evaluation mechanism, undertaken by a Validator procured by the International Secretariat. It is intended to provide all stakeholders with an impartial assessment of whether EITI implementation in Solomon Islands is consistent with the EITI Standard.
The Validation report will also address the impact of the EITI, lessons learnt in EITI implementation, as well as any concerns stakeholders have expressed and recommendations for future implementation of the EITI in the country. Solomon Islands EITI Validation Report is due in July 2015.