High Commissioner to Solomon Islands

Media release

9 November 2013

Foreign Minister Julie Bishop today announced Mr Andrew Byrne as Australia's next High Commissioner to Solomon Islands.

He is expected to take up his appointment in December 2013, replacing Mr Matt Anderson.

Mr Byrne is a senior career officer with the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade (DFAT) and was until recently Minister and Deputy Head of Mission at the Australian Embassy in Manila. He has previously served overseas at the Australian Embassy in Jakarta, and on short term missions in Singapore and Bougainville.

In Canberra, Mr Byrne's roles have included Assistant Secretary of Consular Policy and Canada and Latin America Branches. Prior to joining DFAT, Mr Byrne worked in the departments of Defence; Infrastructure; and Prime Minister and Cabinet.

Mr Byrne holds a Masters degree from the Institute of Defence and Strategic Studies in Singapore, a Bachelor of Arts (Honours) and Bachelor of Science from Flinders University.

Australia values highly its relationship with Solomon Islands, which is based on shared regional interests, and longstanding historical and people-to-people links. Australia is Solomon Islands' largest development partner, and our assistance is focused on enabling broad-based economic growth, improving service delivery in health and education, and strengthening governance. We continue to cooperate in maritime security and the disposal of explosive remnants of war. Australia also works to promote peace and security in Solomon Islands through its leadership of the Regional Assistance Mission to Solomon Islands (RAMSI), in partnership with fifteen Pacific neighbours.

Australia and Solomon Islands share growing commercial links which have seen a tripling of our two-way trade over the past six years. Australian companies are engaged in mining, banking, telecommunications, aviation, tourism and insurance. Solomon Islands is an active participant in the Pacific Seasonal Workers Program.

Honiara is also the headquarters of the Forum Fisheries Agency (FFA), an important regional organisation of which Australia is a member. The FFA contributes strongly to the management, conservation and sustainable use of Pacific fisheries resources.

Media enquiries

  • Minister's office: (02) 6277 7500
  • DFAT Media Liaison: (02) 6261 1555