Welcome to Solomon Islands
Last updated February 18, 2013
The people of the Solomon Islands are made up of Oceania’s three main cultural groups, Melanesia, Polynesia, and Micronesia, the Solomon Islands really is the Pacific’s melting pot. It is here, that these three cultures merge and cohabit as one nation, proud of their rich and unique cultural identity.

The Solomon Islands lie to the east of Papua New Guinea in Melanesia and cover a land area of 28,400 square kilometers (11,000 sq mi) and an EEZ of 1,589,477 Km2, area 30% bigger than the country of South Africa.

The islands have been inhabited for thousands of years. In 1568, the Spanish navigator Álvaro de Mendaña was the first European to visit them, naming them the Islas Salomón.

Discover more about these beautiful islands on this page
General Information
Solomon Islands
Capital Honiara
Original Languages English
Total Land Area 28,400 km2 (10,965 sq mi)
EEZ 1,589,477 Km2
30% Bigger than South Africa
Population 523,000
Currency Solomon Islands Dollar (SBD)
See complete table
Source Wikipedia
Tuna Catching Data
1. National Catching Data by Domestic Fleet
Source WCPFC

The current estimate of the total catch by national Solomon Islands vessels within the WCPFC Convention Area for the year 2011 is 26,583 MT.

  • There are 5 purse seiners and 3 longliners active under the flag of the Solomon Islands.
  • Catches by Purse Seine  25,582MT
    • Skipjack 16,595 MT (63%)
    • Yellowfin 8,727 MT (34%)
    • Bigeye 239 MT (1%)
    • Other Catch  21 MT
  • Catches by longliners None Registered
  • Catches by Pole and Line 871 MT
    • Skipjack 722 MT (83%)
    • Yellowfin 149 MT (17%)
Source WCPFC
Source WCPFC
2. Total Catch in Solomon Island waters in MT by Domestic and Foreign Fleet
Source WCPFC

The total 2010 tuna catches were 177,481 MT

  • Albacore 22,347MT (13%)
  • Bigeye 3,380 MT (2%)
  • Skipjack 122,746 MT (69%)
  • Yellowfin 29,008 MT (16%)
  • Catches by Purse Seine  140,559 MT
    • Bigeye 1,533 MT (1%)
    • Skipjack 122,437 MT (87%)
    • Yellowfin 16,590 MT (12%)
  • Catches by longliners  36,922 MT
    • Albacore 22,347 MT (61%)
    • Bigeye  1,848 MT (5%)
    • Skipjack  310 (1%)
    • Yellowfin  12,418 (34%) 
Solomon Islands manages a Vessel Day Scheme (VDS)
The VDS is a scheme under the Palau Arrangement for the Management of the Western Purse Seine Fishery (PNA, 2004), which establishes a system of tradable fishing days allocated to the Parties as Party Allowable Effort (PAE). The Arrangement was established to
  • Regulate the total allowable effort by purse seine vessels licensed by the Parties at any one time, in response to scientific advice on resource sustainability.
  • Provide a basis for increasing economic benefits to resource-owning states and economic returns to participating vessel owners.
Record of Fishing Vessels in Solomon Islands
Vessel Name Reg No IRCS Vessel Type Length
SOLOMON EMERALD 942 H4NF Tuna purse seiner 46
Solomon Jade 968 H4AB Purse seiner 46
Solomon Opal 970 H4AL Purse seiner 46
SOLOMON PEARL 941 H4NK Tuna purse seiner 46
Solomon Ruby 969 H4AM Purse seiner 46
Source WCPFC
The first European to visit the islands was the Spanish navigator Álvaro de Mendaña de Neira, coming from Peru in 1568.

In 1898 and 1899, more outlying islands were added to the protectorate; in 1900 the remainder of the archipelago, an area previously under German jurisdiction, was transferred to British administration apart from the islands of Buka and Bougainville, which remained under German administration as part of German New Guinea. Under the protectorate, missionaries settled in the Solomons, converting most of the population to Christianity. In the early 20th century, several British and Australian firms began large-scale coconut planting. Economic growth was slow, however, and the islanders benefited little.

In 1908, the islands were visited by Jack London, who was crossing the Pacific Ocean on his boat, the Snark. With the outbreak of the Second World War, most planters and traders were evacuated to Australia, and most cultivation ceased. Some of the most intense fighting of the war occurred in the Solomons. The most significant of the Allied Forces' operations against the Japanese Imperial Forces was launched on August 7, 1942.

Following the independence of neighboring Papua New Guinea from Australia in 1975, the Solomon Islands gained self-government in 1976. Independence was granted on 7 July 1978.

In late 1998, militants on the island of Guadalcanal commenced and had a campaign of intimidation and violence towards Malaitan settlers. In 1999, the Malaita Eagle Force (MEF) was established in response.

In July 2003, Australian and Pacific Island police and troops arrived in the Solomon Islands under the auspices of the Australian-led Regional Assistance Mission to Solomon Islands (RAMSI). A sizable international security contingent of 2,200 police and troops, led by Australia and New Zealand, and with representatives from about 20 other Pacific nations began arriving the next month under Operation Helpem Fren.
Solomon Islands A PNA member

In 1982, Solomon Islands joined the Parties of the Nauru Agreement along to all the other 6 members through the coordination of Pacific Islands Forum Fisheries Agency (FFA). Tuvalu joined later. Today the PNA office is independent and was created in 2010, based in Majuro, Marshall Islands.

In December 2011, the purse-seine free-school skipjack fishery, was certified according to Marine Stewardship Council standards as being sustainable. This means that all skipjack products caught from free schools by PNA-licensed and product-chain-certified purse-seiners fishing in the waters of Solomon Islands or any of the PNA countries EEZ will be eligible for the sustainable and globally well know MSC ecolabel.

The Solomon Islands is an island nation that lies east of Papua New Guinea and consists of many islands Choiseul, the Shortland Islands; the New Georgia Islands; Santa Isabel; the Russell Islands; Nggela (the Florida Islands); Malaita; Guadalcanal; Sikaiana;Maramasike; Ulawa; Uki; Makira (San Cristobal); Santa Ana; Rennell and Bellona; the Santa Cruz Islands and three remote, tiny outliers,Tikopia, Anuta, and Fatutaka.

The country's islands lie between latitudes 5° and 13°S, and longitudes 155° and 169°E. The distance between the westernmost and easternmost islands is about 1,500 kilometres (930 mi). The Santa Cruz Islands (of which Tikopia is part), are situated north of Vanuatu and are especially isolated at more than 200 kilometres (120 mi) from the other islands. Bougainville is geographically part of the Solomon Islands, but politically Papua New Guinea. The Solomon Islands are located within FAO statistical area 71, the Western Central Pacific, has a land mass of approximately 28,400 km2 and an exclusive economic zone (EEZ) of around 1,589,477 Km2.
The Solomon Islands' per-capita GDP of $600 ranks it as a lesser developed nation, and more than 75% of its labour force is engaged in subsistence and fishing. Most manufactured goods and petroleum products must be imported. Until 1998, when world prices for tropical timber fell steeply, timber was Solomon Islands' main export product, and, in recent years, Solomon Islands forests were dangerously overexploited. Other important cash crops and exports include copra and palm oil. In 1998, Ross Mining of Australia began producing gold at Gold Ridge on Guadalcanal. Minerals exploration in other areas continued. However, in the wake of the ethnic violence in June 2000, exports of palm oil and gold ceased while exports of timber fell. The islands are rich in undeveloped mineral resources such as lead, zinc, nickel, and gold.

The Solomon Islands' fisheries also offer prospects for export and domestic economic expansion. However, a Japanese joint venture, Solomon Taiyo Ltd., which operated for 3 decades as the only fish cannery in the country, closed in mid-2000 as a result of the ethnic disturbances and decades of declared losses. The plant has reopened under new investor Tri Marine International taking a controlling interest, whilst retaining domestic equity. The plant has expanded it's operations to include processing domestic catches of purse seining, pole and line and long line operations. Gold mining and Palm oil production remains significant.
The official language is English widely spoken by the general population. Besides English, the Pijin (Solomons Pidgin or Neo-Solomonic) is also very common. It is closely related to Tok Pisin of Papua New Guinea; Bislama of Vanuatu; and Torres Strait Creole of the Torres Strait, Queensland, Australia.
The religion of Solomon Islands is about 92% Christian with the following denominations the Anglican Church of Melanesia 35%, Roman Catholic 19%, South Seas Evangelical Church 17%,United Church in Papua New Guinea and the Solomon Islands 11% and Seventh-day Adventist 10%. Another 5% adhere to aboriginal beliefs.
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