Australia has an enduring interest in a stable Solomon Islands. As well as a desirable goal in and of itself, stability is critical to both economic growth and human development.
Australia’s programs in governance, justice and policing work towards a common goal: that communities in Solomon Islands are safer and experience better access to services. Together, the three programs are a four year $141 million investment in supporting stability in Solomon Islands. Australia complements this with support to democratic governance, as well as supporting Solomon Islands’ ability to respond to natural disasters.
Solomon Islands Governance Program
Up to $30 million, 2017–2021
The Solomon Islands Governance Program builds on the success of the Solomon Islands Economic and Public Sector Governance Program (SIGOV), which ran from 1 July 2013 to 30 June 2017.
The Governance Program works with the Solomon Island’s Ministry of Finance and Treasury, Ministry of Development Planning and Aid Coordination, Customs, the government’s ICT Support Unit, Ministry of Public Service, Office of the Auditor-General and Institute of Solomon Islands Accountants.
The Governance Program’s goal is that Government agencies more effectively support economic growth and service delivery. The Program underpins Australia’s investments in health, education, infrastructure, growth, policing and justice, by helping remove barriers to service delivery that come from poor public financial management and public service capacity.
The Governance Program has four components:
- Fiscally responsible budgeting and borrowing: Supporting Solomon Islands to better plan and execute its budget, keep debt within manageable levels, and support the modernisation of customs to strengthen customs excise collection and border management.
- Professional public financial management cadre: Developing a stronger public financial management capability across government to deliver improved public services.
- A more accountable and responsive public service: Supporting improved human resource management across the public service, gender mainstreaming, and the use of ICT in government service delivery.
- Strengthened coalitions for reform. Recognising the importance of demand-led reforms, the program will work with civil society, professional associations and accountability institutions.
Solomon Islands Justice Program
Up to $32 million, 2017-2021
The Solomon Islands Justice Program (2017-21) builds on the success of the previous Solomon Islands Justice Program, which ran from 1 July 2013 to 30 June 2017.
The Justice Program works with all key justice agencies in Solomon Islands including the Ministry of Justice and Legal Affairs, the National Judiciary, the Attorney-General’s Chambers, the Public Solicitor’s Office, Office of the Director of Public Prosecutions, Police Prosecutions Directorate, Law Reform Commission, Solomon Islands Bar Association and Correctional Services Solomon Islands, as well as the Seif Ples Sexual Assault and Domestic Violence Clinic. The Program’s goal is Communities in Solomon Islands have greater access to a credible justice system that supports the rule of law.
The Justice Program has four components:
- Justice agency strengthening: Supporting the core aspects of the legal system including the courts and correctional systems.
- Legal policy and legislation: Building capacity for improved government legal advice and policy development, and enhanced legislative drafting.
- Improving access to justice: Improving access to justice in the provinces and strengthening responses to family violence.
- Whole of sector strengthening: Supporting cross-cutting issues including improved gender and social inclusion in the justice sector, better human resource and financial management, professional development, and improved information management system.
Solomon Islands Police Development Program
Up to $79 million, 2017-2021
The Solomon Islands Police Development Program (2017-21) will build on the gains made by the Regional Assistance Mission to Solomon Islands (2003-2017).
This police development program seeks to strengthen the capability and responsiveness of the Royal Solomon Islands Police Force (RSIPF) so that it can better undertake community policing and maintain security in Solomon Islands.
The four priority areas are:
- Effective, ethical and accountable leadership and management
- Improved operational capability and capacity
- Improved community relations - to reduce the precursors to conflict and build robust crime prevention strategies, and
- Improved enabling services.
To support SIPDP’s four priorities, AFP activities will focus on:
- Mentoring support and training for senior police officers and select middle managers, including in legislative and regulatory mandates (e.g. the Police Act 2013 and Family Protection Act 2014), professional standards, and strategic planning
- Capacity development support to RSIPF investigations; criminal intelligence and crime prevention; public order management and officer skills maintenance; and prevention of family and gender-based violence
- Strengthening of corporate and governance functions, and
- Support for the consolidation of the limited rearmament of the RSIPF.
The priorities and activities have been developed in close consultation with the RSIPF Commissioner and key Australian stakeholders.