Commissioner, British Antarctic Territory, Commissioner, British Indian Ocean Territory (BIOT), and Director, Overseas Territories

Paul Candler


Paul Candler was appointed Director of Overseas Territories in June 2021. In that role, he holds office as Commissioner of the British Antarctic Territory and Commissioner of the British Indian Ocean Territory.

Prior to joining FCDO, Paul was Director of International, Rights and Constitutional Policy at the Ministry of Justice, where his responsibilities included overseeing the UK Government’s relations with the Crown Dependencies of Jersey, Guernsey and the Isle of Man, and supporting the justice systems of the Overseas Territories.

Curriculum Vitae

Dates Roles
June 2021 to present Director of Overseas Territories
February 2018 to June 2021 Director of International, Constitutional and Rights Policy, Ministry of Justice
July 2016 to February 2018 Deputy Director, Justice, Department for Exiting the European Union
July 2015 to July 2016 Deputy Director, Sentencing and Release Policy, Ministry of Justice
January 2013 to July 2015 Deputy Director, Youth Justice Policy, Ministry of Justice
April 2011 to January 2013 Deputy Director, Group Planning, Resourcing and Change, Ministry of Justice
May 2009 to April 2011 Deputy Director, Offender Management Strategy, Ministry of Justice
January 2007 to May 2009 Head of Project Delivery Unit, Office for Criminal Justice Reform
July 2005 to January 2007 Strategic Policy Team, Home Office
February 2003 to July 2005 Head of Film Policy, Department for Culture, Media and Sport
May 2001 to February 2003 Private Secretary to the Cabinet Secretary, Cabinet Office
September 1998 to May 2001 Fast Streamer, Department for Culture, Media and Sport

Commissioner, British Antarctic Territory

Administering the British Antarctic Territory, appointing such officers as the Senior Magistrate and Coroner as required and the power to make laws, subject to certain conditions.

Legislation enacted by the Territory is in line with, and implements, international regulations under the Antarctic Treaty System (ie the Antarctic Treaty and its Environmental Protocol, and the Convention on Conservation of Antarctic Marine Living Resources), as well as other relevant international instruments.

Foreign, Commonwealth & Development Office

Commissioner, British Indian Ocean Territory (BIOT)

The Commissioner has the power to make laws for the peace, order and good government of the territory. As with any other British Overseas Territory, BIOT is constitutionally distinct and separate from the UK, with its own laws and Administration. The Commissioner is represented in the Territory by the Commissioner’s Representative, a Royal Navy Commander, who carries out the instructions of the Commissioner.

Foreign, Commonwealth & Development Office

Director, Overseas Territories

The Director is responsible for UK policy towards its overseas territories, with a particular focus on good governance and the rule of law, economic sustainability and international relations.

Foreign, Commonwealth & Development Office