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Goff names new Ambassador to Jakarta

Hon Phil Goff
Minister of Foreign Affairs and Trade

5 September 2005
Media statement

Goff names new Ambassador to Jakarta

New Zealand’s next Ambassador to Indonesia will be career diplomat Phillip Gibson, Foreign Minister Phil Goff announced today.

“Indonesia is very important to New Zealand. It is the world’s third largest democracy, and the world’s most populous Muslim nation. It is also the largest country in the South East Asian region, where it has traditionally played a central leadership role," Mr Goff said.

“Both countries work together in a number of international groupings on issues as diverse as counter-terrorism, agricultural policy reform, Asia-Pacific security initiatives and interfaith dialogue. Indonesia’s leading role in ASEAN has ensured that New Zealand will be closely integrated in important regional initiatives.

"New Zealanders were quick to respond to the tsunami disaster and earthquakes when they struck Sumatra.

“The visit of President Yudhoyono to New Zealand earlier this year, only a few months after taking office, underscored the existing ties between us and their potential to grow further," Mr Goff said.

Trade between the two nations, which is slightly in Indonesia's favour, was worth just over $1 billion in the year to June.

Mr Gibson, a former chief executive of the Asia 2000 Foundation, is currently New Zealand's Commissioner General at the Aichi World Expo, Japan. He was previously Ambassador in Tokyo, and has also served as Ambassador in Bangkok, and been posted to Rome, New York and Manila.

He takes up his appointment in November, replacing Christopher Elder, who will be returning to Wellington.


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