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Notice given 11 July 2003

1620  Senator Brown: To ask the Minister representing the Minister for Foreign Affairs—With reference to Australia’s proposed intervention in the Solomon Islands:

(1) (a) Where and how will major management decisions during the lifetime of the operation take place; and (b) will the process be transparent and accountable to all citizens of Australia and the Solomon Islands.

(2) Are there, or will there be, measurable objectives with time-specific indicators of progress.

(3) Is there, or will there be, an agreed formal procedure for localising all decision-making processes and roles delegated during this intervention.

(4) (a) Does the ‘project’ include an adequate and appropriate national communication system so that all Solomon Islands’ citizens have access to information on what is proposed and what is happening during the intervention; and (b) how will this information be communicated.

(5) Can the Minister guarantee that established Solomon Islands national development policies and plans will not be replaced or modified by new goals and objectives set by a new generation of expatriate ‘experts’.

(6) Does the Minister accept the necessity for thorough and ongoing community consultation on the nature, composition, power, transparency and accountability of the international/multilateral body, as proposed by the Australian Strategic Policy Institute (ASPI) report, to oversee the conduct of the peace-building and nation re-building processes; and (b) how will this be carried out and by whom.

(7) Can a list be provided of substantiated costings envisaged for all stakeholders.

(8) Can an accurate risk analysis matrix be provided for all stakeholders and risk management strategies, such as the Government normally requires for development assistance using public money.

(9) How much aid money has Australia spent in the Solomon Islands over the past 15 years.

(10) Is it correct that much of Australia’s past aid has been directed into police, judiciary, customs, governance, auditing, forestry, education, health, water and various ministry reforms, and that these are areas now cited by the Australian Government as needing urgent reform; if so, what were the failings in Australia’s past assistance that now necessitate intervention.

(11) In what way will the proposed intervention be an improvement on Australia’s past performance.

(12) What processes will be instituted to identify, design and implement appropriate, sustainable endogenous development options and strategies.

(13) (a) To what extent is the ASPI report being employed to guide policy on this intervention; and (b) how does it compare with the recent AusAID framework document on assistance to the Solomon Islands.

1621  Senator Brown: To ask the Minister representing the Prime Minister—Given Australia’s new interest in helping Pacific ‘friends’, such as the Solomon Islands, and the special concerns of the Pacific island states regarding the potentially disastrous effects upon them of global warming:

(1) Will Australia sign the Kyoto Protocol.

(2) What steps will Australia take to reduce the impact of global warming on Pacific islands.