Good morning olgeta, I’m sure all of you in this room can relate when I say that the journey for any young individual pursuing business in our country, has been and is one of the most challenging and loneliest roads they may have to walk.

With the establishment of the Young Entrepreneurs Council Solomon Islands (YECSI), all our lonely roads may finally meet at a junction as we inspire, learn, advocate and grow from each others’ roadmaps. (We are) working together in this meaningful public and private space, towards a new journey – without abandoning our own journeys – to foster a more effective, robust and thriving entrepreneurial environment for our young people to pursue business and to flourish.

This is at the heart of the vision I share with YECSI.

I believe my roadmap as a young entrepreneur has equipped me with a wealth of experience, a great network and a good knowledge of the local ecosystem and this is what I bring to my chairmanship of the YECSI Board.  I take this opportunity to proactively advocate for entrepreneurship as one of the plausible solutions to address a young growing population and our high unemployment.

I have so much yet to learn from you and your roadmaps and I am immensely grateful for the opportunity to serve you as your Chair alongside the amazing young individuals that form our YECSI board.

The road ahead will not be smooth, but together, with one destination in mind and all of us driving this engine, I KNOW we can get there!

This meaningful public private space would not be possible without the contribution of YECSI stakeholders to begin our journey.

Honourable Prime Minister, thank you for your presence here tonight. Your presence speaks volumes of the support you have for our young people. Thank you Mr Dongling Li of ILO for the YEC model initiative, your support in YECSI’s initial funding and for being here.

To our big sibling the Solomon Islands Chamber of Commerce & Industries (SICCI), Chair of SICCI, CEOs of SICCI, Charles Pearson and SICCI board and members, YECSI couldn’t ask for a better older brother/sister to pave the pathway and a noteworthy roadmap and supporting us in this journey.

To the Ministry of Women, Youth, Children and Family Affairs, represented here tonight by PS, Director of Youth and team, thank you for your immense support in bringing YECSI into fruition. My board and I look forward to working and building upon this meaningful partnership to ensure we are all achieving and sharing the greater vision for our young population.

Dr Jimmie Rodgers, thank you for believing in the potential and capacity of our young generation (and putting me on the spot)

And last but certainly not least, all of this would not be possible without YECSI’s human asset, John Wopereis, our YECSI Coordinator and the ignition to our engine. Your hard work, persistence and dedication to execute YECSI from its beginnings to today, is one to be recognised and applauded. Thank you.

Inclusivity in the decision-making processes and capacity building of our young generation to leverage despite our environmental (and current economical) vulnerabilities and smart development must be prioritised and it must start with restructuring and exercising good leadership.

As we redirect our journey at 40 years of independence, I would like to remind us all that, we are only limited by our imagination as to what we can do to help ourselves and our young people of Solomon Islands.

YECSI is officially launched. Thank you YECSI & SICCI members and all for attending! Tagio Tumas.

If you’re a young entrepreneur in the Solomon Islands or just started your business, become a member of YECSI (https://m.facebook.com/YECSolomonIslands/) and together let’s drive this engine towards a better environment for entrepreneurship and innovation!


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