Parliament

Gordon Campbell | Parliament TV | Parliament Today | Video | Questions Of the Day | Search

 

Helen Clark Speech - President's Luncheon Malta

Rt. Hon Helen Clark
19 May 2004

President's luncheon, San Anton Palace, Malta
Mr President, ladies and gentlemen.

Thank you for those kind words. It is hard to believe that it is nearly two years since I had the pleasure of welcoming you to New Zealand in your then capacity as Prime Minister. I am delighted to be here making a return visit to Malta. I have visited this country on three previous occasions and have a great interest in its history at the crossroads of Europe. To come now as Prime Minister is a special privilege, and I am honoured by the warmth of your welcome.

This is a time of change for Malta, with your entry into the European Union fewer than 3 weeks ago. The EU is a significant partner for New Zealand across a broad range of international issues, and it is our second largest trading partner. Malta’s accession to the Union adds another element to the relationship between our two countries. New Zealand is looking forward to having another good friend in the Union. I am sure that Malta’s contribution will be distinctive and important, adding even more colour to an already varied European flag.

Mr President, New Zealand values its long relationship with Malta. We have a shared history going back to New Zealand’s participation in World Wars One and Two in Europe. Later today I will be laying a wreath at the Pieta Military Ceremony to honour the New Zealand servicemen and women who are buried here or who were lost at sea. Some were evacuated from Gallipoli during World War One, and some lost their lives during those critical and difficult years of the Second World War when Malta was under siege. Those who made it home to New Zealand brought stories and memories with them which have created deep links with Malta. We are well aware of the bravery and courage of the Maltese people during the most difficult days of World War Two and of the award of the George Cross in recognition of that.

Our shared membership of the Commonwealth is one of the foundations of our modern relationship, but that’s not all we have in common. We have similar points of view on many important international issues, and we have co-operated closely in areas such as the Law of the Sea. Each of us understands what it is to be an island nation with a relatively small population and with the advantages and the challenges which flow from that.

Our relationship has been enhanced this morning with the signing of the Working Holiday Scheme, something the President and I discussed in 2002. It will allow young people from Malta and New Zealand to spend up to a year working and travelling in each other’s countries. This will help us to keep up to date our people-to-people contacts, forged so many years ago in times of danger and deprivation.

I hope to return to Malta for the Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting here next year. The legendary hospitality of the Maltese people augurs well for a very successful CHOGM.

May I now propose a toast to the president and people of Malta.

ENDS

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Regional Headlines

Decision Day: Peters Chooses Labour

Winston Peters says he will form a Government in coalition with Labour and the Greens giving confidence and supply.

Peters said he had been offered the position of Deputy Prime Minister and a number of other ministerial posts would go to his colleagues

He said economic and monetary policy changes were needed to face a coming economic downturn.>>>More

Reaction

Labour on its agreement |Peters: Post-Election Announcement Speech | Greenpeace “cautiously hopeful” about new Government | ACT - Madman on the loose | E tū ecstatic | Chamber welcomes the outcome

 

Climate: Increasing Greenhouse Emissions Hit NZ

New Zealand is seeing impacts of excess greenhouse gas emissions in our climate and oceans, according to the latest national report from the Ministry for the Environment and Stats NZ about the state of the atmosphere and climate…More>>

ALSO:


Wellington.Scoop: Arrests At Blockade Of "Weapons Expo"

“We encourage people in Wellington to get down to the Westpac Stadium now for a day of awesome peace action. There will be plenty of food, music and activities to keep us sustained through the day.” More>>

ALSO:

Rorschach Restructuring: PSA Taking Inland Revenue To Court Over Psychometrics

The Public Service Association will be seeing Inland Revenue in Employment Court over its intention to psychometrically test employees reapplying for their roles at the department as part of its controversial Business Transformation restructuring plan. More>>

ALSO:

Nuclear Disarmament: Nobel Peace Prize 2017 Awarded To ICAN

Congratulations from iCAN Aotearoa New Zealand to international iCAN, the other iCAN national campaigns and partner organisations, and the countless organisations and individuals who have worked so hard for a nuclear weapons-free world since 1945. More>>

ALSO:

Expenses: Waikato DHB CEO Resigns

An independent inquiry has identified that Dr Murray had spent more than the agreed $25K allocated for relocation costs, and other unauthorized expenses involving potential financial breaches of the chief executive’s obligations. More>>

ALSO:

Wellington.Scoop: Sad About The Trolley Buses?

The Regional Council’s MetLink is today spending money to tell us that it really loves Wellington’s trolley buses, even though they’re all being taken off our roads by the end of this month. More>>

ALSO:

Post-Election: Preliminary Coalition Talks Begin

New Zealand First will hold post-election preliminary discussions in Wellington with the National Party tomorrow morning and the Labour Party tomorrow afternoon. More>>

 
 
 
 
 

LATEST HEADLINES

  • PARLIAMENT
  • POLITICS
  • REGIONAL
 
 

Featured InfoPages

Opening the Election