Measures announced today in the 2012-13 Budget for the Foreign Affairs and Trade portfolio reinforce the Government's commitment to protect and promote Australia's interests abroad.
The Government will allocate $52.6 million over five years to enhance Australia's overseas diplomatic network through strengthening existing missions and establishing two new posts – an additional post in China and one also in Senegal.
The new posts and additional positions at existing missions will help guarantee Australia's national security and prosperity amid global shifts in economic and strategic influence.
A new Consulate-General in Chengdu, as announced by Prime Minister Gillard in March, will capitalise on the growing economic opportunities for Australia in western China.
An Australian Embassy in Dakar will support expanding Australian commercial and resource industry interests in West Africa. This will be Australia's first post in Francophone West Africa.
The Government will also provide $95.7 million over two years to the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade (DFAT) to sustain diplomatic and civilian aspects of Australia's critical whole-of-government engagement in Afghanistan. A further $72.2 million will be invested over two years to continue civilian security arrangements for the Baghdad Embassy, ensuring the safety of staff.
For further details, see www.budget.gov.au
- Minister's office: (02) 6277 7584
- DFAT Media Liaison: (02) 6261 1555