Care-taker Prime Minister Dr Derek Sikua has officially opened the Solomon Islands Mission to Fiji with the unveiling of a plaque, in Suva, yesterday morning.

Speaking at the event, Prime Minister Sikua said the formal establishment of the chancery office is a significant milestone after thirty years of formal diplomatic relations between Solomon Islands and Fiji.

He said Fiji is a very "strategic location for the region and the country views the role of the Suva mission as having three purposes, including the purpose of protecting the interests of Solomon Islands citizens and providing consular services to them, working or studying in Fiji."

He said in terms of business and development, Fiji is the only other forum island country that has a reasonably sized manufacturing sector and a sizeable local investor community that Solomon Islands can explore for possible bilateral economic and trade cooperation.

He also said that there is room for the two countries to further develop their relations citing sectors such as trade, investment, health, education, aviation, transport and labor mobility as areas of interest.

He added that Solomon Islands could also learn from Fiji as a regional country with a well developed tourism industry.

The Solomon Islands Mission opening was attended by Fiji's Interim Leader Commodore Frank Bainimarama, Fiji's Foreign Affairs Minister Ratu Inoke Kubuabola, Solomon Islands Foreign Affairs Minister William Haomae, Fiji's Education Minister Filipe Bole, various dignitaries and representatives of the Solomon Islands community in Suva.