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McCully announces next Ambassador to China

McCully announces next Ambassador to China

Foreign Affairs Minister Murray McCully has today named John McKinnon QSO as New Zealand’s next Ambassador to China.

“New Zealand’s relationship with China has become one of our most important,” says Mr McCully.

“In the past six years the value of two-way goods trade has doubled, while the value of our exports has tripled.

“In response we are expanding our diplomatic presence and we will open a new post in Western China later this year - our fourth diplomatic office on the mainland.

“The new post will help promote New Zealand as a tourism and investment destination, while also being a valuable base for New Zealand companies looking to expand beyond the coastal cities of China.

“Mr McKinnon is currently the executive director of the Asia New Zealand Foundation and was previously the Secretary of Defence. He has a strong background in the region and is well-placed to lead our growing engagement with China,” says Mr McCully.

Mr McKinnon was previously New Zealand’s Ambassador to China from 2001 to 2004 and has had postings to Canberra, Washington and New York. He will take up his role at the beginning of 2015 and will also be accredited to Mongolia.

Ends

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Gordon Campbell:
On First Time Voting (Centre Right)

For the next two days, I’m turning my column over to two guest columnists who are first time voters. I’ve asked them to explain why they were voting, for whom and what role they thought their parental upbringing had played in shaping their political beliefs ; and at the end, to choose a piece of music.

One guest columnist will be from the centre right, one from the centre left. Today’s column is from the centre right – by James Penn:

As someone who likes to consider himself, in admittedly vainglorious fashion, a considered and rational actor, the act of voting for the first time is a somewhat confusing one. I know that my vote has a close to zero chance of actually influencing the outcome of Parliament. The chance I will cast the marginal vote that adds to National or Act’s number of seats in Parliament is miniscule. The chance, even if I did, that doing so would affect the government makes voting on a strictly practical level even more spurious as a worthwhile exercise.

But somehow I have spent a large amount of time (perhaps detrimentally so, depending on the outcome of my upcoming exams) agonising over how to cast my first vote in a national election. More>>

 

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