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The owner and managing director of Dalgro SI Limited, Reginald Donald signing the pay cheque for his 400 workers at the company’s board room in Honiara Photo: MAIKA BOLATIKI
By MAIKA BOLATIKI
Fijian businessman, Reginald Douglas, now operating in Honiara, Solomon Islands, wants to provide a shipping link between Melanesian countries.
Mr Douglas, owner and managing director of Dalgro SI Limited, told the Fiji Sun at his office in Honiara that the company was already involved in shipping in the Solomon Islands.
The company also owns barges in Fiji.
Mr Douglas hails from Vuna in Taveuni. He went to the Solomon Islands in 1972 .
Mr Douglas said the small Melanesian countries need to be connected to the two major producers, Fiji and Papua New Guinea, to market their products.
“My company is willing to fill this vacuum to improve trade with the MSG countries,” Mr Douglas said.
He said he had already met with Fiji’s non-resident High Commissioner to the Solomon Islands, Romanu Tikotikoca and, he was happy with the proposal.
Speaking to the Fiji Sun at the Honiara Hotel last Saturday, Mr Tikotikoca confirmed his meeting with Mr Douglas.
Mr Tikotikoca said he had already had a meeting with the MSG secretariat in Vanuatu and had a positive reaction.
Mr Douglas said they are now negotiating to purchase ships to serve MSG countries .
Mr Douglas flew to Melbourne, Australia to sign documents on the two barges recently purchased by the company.
The company started in the Solomon Islands with logging and now has expanded into civil construction and mining.
According to Mr Douglas they would be involved in bauxite mining and they had been given a licence to mine 30 million tonnes of bauxite.
Currently the company is supplying the following in the Solomon Islands -
Ready-mixed concrete blocks
The company has just won an Asian Development Bank (ADB) US$7 million (FJ$ 13.1 million) contract for the construction of bridges and jetties.
Major road construction and repairs in the Solomons are also carried out by the company.
Currently the company employs 400 workers, 22 expatriates and 14 Fijians.
Dalgro has operates a number of companies namely; Douglas Concrete, Dalgro Construction, Dalgro Logistics, Dalgro Shipping, Douglas Feedlot and Contractor SI. Dalgro (SI) Limited (DSIL) was established in Solomon Islands on the May 30, 1994, Dalgro (SI) Limited has now grown to a large vibrant independent contractor in the Islands.
The company has two other trading locations in the South Pacific Region; Brisbane, Australia, and the Fiji Islands.
Street kids Mr Douglas as part of the company policy looks after street kids.
“At the moment I look after 15 street kids,” Mr Douglas said.
These street kids built their houses within the company land.
Mr Douglas said he is responsible for their discipline and their welfare.
Cement purchase The company according to Mr Douglas purchases 1,500 tonnes of cement from Fiji and 50,000 tonnes from Thailand on a monthly basis.