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8 April 1998


The Minister for Foreign Affairs, Mr Alexander Downer, and the Deputy Prime Minister and Minister for Trade, Mr Tim Fischer, today announced the appointment of Ms Joanna Hewitt as Australia's Ambassador for Asia Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC), succeeding Mr Peter Grey in the position.

The appointment of Ms Hewitt to succeed Mr Grey (who had recently taken up his appointment as Australia's Ambassador to Japan, underscores the Government's ongoing commitment to pursuing Australia's regional economic and trade priorities. APEC remains the pre-eminent regional forum for economic and trade dialogue.

Ministers recognise that securing APEC's own ambitious trade and investment liberalisation goals will be challenging in the financial crisis which continues to confront the region. Ms Hewitt will bring her considerable energy, skills and experience to working as Australia's Senior Official, with her counterparts in other APEC economies, to ensure the continued relevance and effectiveness of APEC. She will be working particularly closely with Australian business to advance Australia's priority interests in APEC.

Ms Hewitt is a senior career officer of the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade. Ms Hewitt joined the Department of Foreign Affairs in 1972. From 1983 to 1984 she was Head of Parliamentary Briefing Section at the Department of Prime Minister and Cabinet. From 1985 to 1986 she was Private Secretary in the Office of the Minister for Trade and in 1987 Division Head of Coordination and Review Office at the Department of Trade. From 1987 to 1988 she was Principal Adviser of the Economic and Trade Development Division at the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade. From 1988 to 1992 she was Division Head at the Department of Primary Industries and Energy. She served briefly as Minister (Agriculture and Energy) in Australia's Delegation to the OECD, Paris and in 1993 was appointed as Head of Division for Food, Agriculture and Fisheries in the OECD Secretariat where she served for three years. She was appointed Deputy Secretary in the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade in 1996.

Ms Hewitt gained a Bachelor of Economics degree (Honours, First Class) at the University of Western Australia and Master of Science (Econ) at London School of Economics. She was born in Denmark, Western Australia in 1949.

8 April 1998

See The Department's Head of Mission page for a downloadable image of Ms Hewitt.

Local Date: Tuesday, 07-Jan-2014 10:38:08 EST

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