Last updated in September 2014
Diplomatic relations between the Federal Republic of Germany and the Solomon Islands were established on 11 July 1978, only a few days after the country gained independence from the United Kingdom. Political relations between the two countries are friendly and untroubled. The German Ambassador in Canberra, Australia, is also accredited to the Solomon Islands. Since 1986, Gerald Stenzel has been the German Honorary Consul in Honiara.
In 2013, bilateral trade stood at approximately EUR 14.9 million, with German imports from the Solomon Islands worth EUR 14.1 million and German exports to the Solomon Islands EUR 0.8 million, putting the Solomon Islands in 142nd place among Germany’s foreign trading partners in terms of German imports and 211th place in terms of German exports.
Germany supports the Solomon Islands’ economic, social and cultural development, in particular through its substantial contributions to the European Union. The EU is the second biggest development aid donor in the region, after Australia, the partner countries being allocated funding for various projects and programmes in accordance with Country Strategy Papers. Under the 10th European Development Fund (EDF), a total of EUR 16.5 million was earmarked for the Solomon Islands for the period 2008 to 2013. The focus of the 10th EDF in the Solomon Islands is sustainable rural development with particular attention to capacity building.
The Solomon Islands is also closely involved in German cooperation on climate policy with the countries of the South Pacific Region. Participants from the Solomon Islands were among those attending the International Workshop on Seismology, Seismic Hazard and Tsunami Early Warning organised by the Potsdam-based German Research Centre for Geosciences in July 2010. The project Adapting to Climate Change in the Pacific Island Region, which runs from 2009 to 2015 and is being conducted by the Deutsche Gesellschaft für Internationale Zusammenarbeit (GIZ), is also being extended to cover the Solomon Islands. In addition, as part of the Federal Environment Ministry’s (BMU) International Climate Initiative (IKI), EUR 2.3 million was made available for the period 2009 to 2013 to fund a project to conserve and use mangrove forests for coastal protection in several South Pacific states including the Solomon Islands. From 2008 to 2010, the Federal Environment Ministry provided funding for the so-called Coral Triangle Initiative in Indonesia and Papua New Guinea, which was also supported by the Solomon Islands. In 2011, another GIZ-initiated, BMU-funded regional project was launched in several countries including the Solomon Islands. The project promotes activities to conserve tropical forests as a contribution to climate protection.
In addition, the German Embassy in Canberra, which is also responsible for the Solomon Islands, is supporting a number of small-scale projects there, mostly in the education sector. In 2009, it provided equipment for a training centre for people with visual disabilities. In 2010, it funded the construction of a horticultural nursery in Honiara that provides training for young people.