A group of engineers from Indonesia have arrived in Honiara to help the Solomon Islands with its preparations for the 2023 Pacific Games.
The 10 workers arrived in the capital on a special chartered Garuda Airways flight that had been sent to the Solomon Islands by the Government in Jakarta to repatriate its citizens who have been marooned there since the outbreak of the coronavirus pandemic.
The Solomon Islands has had only 16 cases - and no deaths - since the crisis started in March but Indonesia, where there has been over half-a-million cases and more than 16,000 deaths, had closed its international borders.
Solomon Islands Prime Minister Manasseh Sogavare confirmed the arrival of the engineers who work for Indonesian state-owned construction enterprise PT Wijaya Karya (WIKA).
They have been selected to build a $7.5 million (£5.6 million/€6.3 million) multi-purpose sports complex for the Pacific Games which is expected to host basketball, futsal and volleyball.
The group all had to undergo strict pre-departure clearance procedures before they could join the flight.
Sugeng Rochadi, who is overseeing the project in the Solomon Islands for WIKA, revealed that the complex will be built over an area of 5,800 square metres and is due to be completed by December 31 next year.
It will be built to high standards, Rochadi promised, using renewable energy products such as solar water heaters, and will be able to withstand severe weather conditions, including typhoons and earthquakes, which are common in the Pacific Islands.
"We really appreciate the trust from the Solomon Islands Government," Rochadi told the Solomon Times.
"This will strengthen the good cooperation between Indonesia and Solomon Islands that has been established for a long time."
In September, a delegation from China flew in on a special charter flight to begin planning to build the main facilities.
The key project is the new $13 million (£10 million/€11 million) National Stadium, which will have a capacity of 10,000.
Early work, though, has been concentrated on building the Solomon Islands National Institute of Sports.
Phase two of the construction has been underway since the completion of the mezzanine floor slab, which was phase one.
The current phase includes the aligning of steel frames for the roofing, to be followed by the actual raising of roofs and interior work on the bottom floors.
It is due to be completed by the end of the year.