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Peters names new Ambassador to Sweden

Peters names new Ambassador to Sweden

New Zealand's new Ambassador to Sweden will be career diplomat Barbara Bridge, Foreign Minister Winston Peters announced today.

Ms Bridge will be New Zealand's first Ambassador to be based in Stockholm.

"The opening of New Zealand's first embassy in the Nordic countries is a significant step forward for our relations with the region, and is part of the seismic change for the foreign service announced in this year's Budget," said Mr Peters.

"New Zealand and Sweden have a long-standing and warm relationship. The two countries share common views on many social and economic issues.

"The new embassy in Stockholm will allow New Zealand to intensify its working relationship with Sweden on global issues, and to progress links in trade, innovation and science and technology.

"It will also strengthen our ties with the European Union, as Sweden will hold the EU Presidency in the second half of next year," said Mr Peters.

Ms Bridge is currently Deputy Director of Pacific Division at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Trade. She will take over responsibility for Sweden next month from the current New Zealand Ambassador Rachel Fry, who is based in The Hague.

Ms Bridge has previously been posted to Ottawa and Vienna, where she was New Zealand's Ambassador and Permanent Representative to the United Nations.

ENDS

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