The ADF has handed over a second patrol boat to the nation as part of a broader program to bolster maritime security in the region.
A Guardian Class patrol boat, RSIPV Taro, has been delivered to the Solomon Islands under Australia’s Pacific Maritime Security Program.
The Solomon Islands’ High Commissioner, His Excellency Robert Sisilo, accepted RSIPV Taro on behalf of the Solomon Islands government at a ceremony in Henderson, Western Australia.
Head of Navy Engineering, Rear Admiral Katherine Richards, AM, CSC, RAN noted the long history of security cooperation between Australia and Solomon Islands.
“The new Guardian Class patrol boats play an important role in tackling our shared regional security challenges, and the delivery of RSIPV Taro is a significant milestone,” RADM Richards said.
“We are better positioned to respond to maritime threats, from illegal fishing to transnational crime, by working together, coordinating closely and building our interoperability.”
RSIPV Taro is the second of two Australian-built Guardian Class vessels to be handed over to Solomon Islands, with the first vessel, RSIPV Gizo, delivered in November 2019.
“Solomon Islands is leading the way in its use of the Guardian Class. The completion of its Guardian Class fleet today is a significant step-up in Solomon Islands’ and regional capability,” RADM Richards added.
As part of the Pacific Maritime Security Program, 12 Pacific Island nations and Timor-Leste will receive 21 Guardian Class patrol boats.