© Reuters. Photo: Children fishing on a beach in central Honiara, capital of the Solomon Islands September 14, 2012. REUTERS/Daniel Munoz/FILE PHOTO

WELLINGTON (Reuters) – The World Bank said on Tuesday it had approved a fisheries project in the Solomon Islands, the third new project announced in the Pacific nation in as many weeks.

According to the World Bank, the $13.5 million project will strengthen regional fisheries management to better protect them from illegal fishing. It is one of four projects totaling US$130 million, which are part of the World Bank’s historic increase in support to the Solomon Islands.

Stephen Ndigwa, the World Bank’s regional director for Papua New Guinea and the Pacific Islands, told Reuters last week that the increased funding is the culmination of a multi-year commitment to support the development of the Solomon Islands.

Ndegwa said the World Bank expects to announce 40 new projects in the Pacific, worth more than $1 billion in the current fiscal year.

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