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Goff names new Ambassador to the Philippines

Goff names new Ambassador to the Philippines

New Zealand' s next Ambassador to the Philippines will be career diplomat Rob Moore-Jones

New Zealand' s next Ambassador to the Philippines will be career diplomat Rob Moore-Jones, Foreign Minister Phil Goff announced today.

"The Philippines is an important partner for New Zealand in South East Asia. Our bilateral relations are warm and we have regular exchanges on economic, political and security matters in regional groups such as ASEAN and APEC, and the Philippines is our ASEAN dialogue co-ordinator this year," Mr Goff said.

The Philippines is New Zealand's 13th largest export market, with trade totalling $614 million in 2003. New Zealand exports there rose nearly five percent in value last year, led by dairy and wood products.

New Zealand's development assistance to the Philippines totals $3.3 million annually, aimed primarily at supporting natural resources management, good governance, indigenous issues, and peace and development work on the island of Mindanao.

Mr Moore-Jones is currently deputy director of North Asia Division at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Trade. His previous overseas postings were to Manila, Washington and the Cook Islands, where he was High Commissioner from 1998-2001.

Mr Moore-Jones takes up his position in May.


ENDS

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