8 February 2008
Diplomatic Appointment: Consul-General in Hong Kong
I have confirmed the appointment of Mr Les Luck as Australia’s new Consul-General in the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region (SAR) of the People’s Republic of China. Mr Luck will also serve as Australia’s representative to the Macau SAR and will replace Mr Murray Cobban who has been Consul-General since January 2005. Mr Luck is expected to take up his appointment in April 2008.
Australia has important and enduring interests in Hong Kong. It is our 12th largest export market and 14th largest trading partner. Hong Kong is also our fourth largest source of investment, with major interests in utilities and transport infrastructure. It is also our eighth largest services export market and our sixth largest source of services imports. Hong Kong remains a valued partner in APEC, the WTO and other multilateral forums.
Hong Kong’s role as a major international trade, finance, services and information hub has increased the prosperity of all economies in the Asia Pacific region. It is also a leading business base in Asia for Australian firms. Australian business activities in Hong Kong range from banking, accounting, legal, engineering and information technology services to retail and general trading. The Australian Chamber of Commerce in Hong Kong, with over 1000 members, is among the largest in Hong Kong and is the largest Australian chamber overseas.
Australia has strong people-to-people links with Hong Kong. There are around 60,000 Australians in Hong Kong and 90,000 Hong Kong expatriates in Australia. Hong Kong is Australia's third largest source of international students (24,600), there are over 300,000 Hong Kong alumni from Australian universities, and 153,000 Hong Kong tourists visited Australia in 2006-07,
Mr Luck is a senior career officer with the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade and is currently First Assistant Secretary of Americas Division, a position he has held since July 2006.
Mr Luck was Ambassador for Disarmament and Permanent Representative to the United Nations in Geneva (1999-2002) and Deputy High Commissioner in Singapore (1987-91). He has also served in Addis Ababa, Nairobi, Vienna and Bangkok. In Canberra, Mr Luck was Ambassador for Counter-Terrorism (2003-06); First Assistant Secretary, International Security Division (2002-03) and Assistant Secretary, Parliamentary and Media Branch (1998-99).
Educated at Flinders University, Mr Luck holds a Bachelor of Arts (Hons). He joined the public service in 1971. Mr Luck is married.
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