MEDIA RELEASE

MINISTER FOR FOREIGN AFFAIRS
ALEXANDER DOWNER


FA 52

19 May 1999

Diplomatic Appointment: High Commissioner to Papua New Guinea

I have today announced the appointment of Mr Nick Warner, as Australia's next High Commissioner to Papua New Guinea.

Mr Warner will replace Mr David Irvine, who has been High Commissioner since March 1996. Mr Warner is expected to take up his appointment in September 1999.

Australia has a strong and extensive relationship with Papua New Guinea reflecting our long historical association and wide-ranging people-to-people links. The relationship is further underpinned by vigorous commercial ties, strong defence cooperation, and a shared commitment to a secure and prosperous region. Australia supports Papua New Guinea's development efforts, and maintains significant cultural, sporting and personal connections.

Australia's largest bilateral aid program is directed towards Papua New Guinea ($321 million in 1998-99) and Australia is Papua New Guinea's largest development cooperation partner. Papua New Guinea is Australia's 19th largest trading partner and 12th largest investment destination. Australia will continue to seek opportunities to further strengthen this important relationship through continued engagement and cooperation with the Government and people of Papua New Guinea.

Mr Warner is an officer with the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade, currently serving as First Assistant Secretary of the South and South East Asia Division. He was Ambassador to Iran from 1994 until 1997 and has served as Deputy Head of Mission in Phnom Penh (1991-93) and as Head of the Australian Liaison Office in Namibia (1989-90).

Mr Warner was born in Singapore in 1950 and has a Masters degree from the Australian National University.

For further information:  Department - Tony Melville 02 6261 1555

Local Date: Tuesday, 07-Jan-2014 10:36:15 EST

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