The leader of Solomon Islands says he spurned a U.S.-Pacific Islands summit this week to avoid being subjected to a "lecture" about the United States' qualities.

The pro-China prime minister, Manasseh Sogavare, also said he had "more important" business to deal with at home where he had a heavy legislative agenda in parliament.

"I am not going to sit down there and listen to people who lecture me, no way," he told reporters on his return home Wednesday evening in a news conference shown on local media.

Sogavare, who was in New York last week to attend the United Nations General Assembly, did not extend his stay in the United States to attend the summit hosted by President Joe Biden on Monday.

"We're disappointed that he's chosen not to come to this very special summit," a White House official said at the time.

Sogavare said he had attended a similar Pacific summit last year.

"How these meetings are arranged, they give you three minutes to talk and then you go and listen to them lecture you, lecture you about how good they are," he said.

"It needs now for them to respect Pacific leaders and leaders everywhere now. They need to change their strategies."

Sogavare said he had been treated differently by the leaders of Australia, China and South Korea, who each held hourlong meetings with him.

The Solomons leader severed diplomatic ties with self-ruling Taiwan in 2019 in favor of official relations with Beijing, unlocking large sums of Chinese aid and investment.

In July, China rolled out the red carpet for Sogavare and inked a raft of deals, including one allowing it to extend its police presence in the island nation until 2025.