Today I announce the appointment of Mr Andrew Barnes as Australia's next High Commissioner to Ghana. Mr Barnes will also have non-resident accreditation to Burkina Faso, Côte d'Ivoire, Guinea, Liberia, Mali, Senegal, Sierra Leone and Togo.

Australia values its relationship with Ghana and the wider West African community. Ghana is an increasingly important economic and political player in the region and one of our most significant trade and investment partners in Africa.

Australia’s export trade with Ghana is focused on delivering advanced, specialised engineering equipment and parts used in the mining industry. This trade complements the significant mining interests of Australian companies in West Africa.

The Australian Government is also supporting Ghana’s development through the provision of Australia Awards, particularly in agriculture. Since 2011, 227 Ghanaians have received awards to undertake university degrees, short-courses or fellowships with Australian institutions.

Mr Barnes is a career officer with the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade (DFAT) and is currently Director, Southern, Central and West Africa Section. He has previously served overseas as an Exchange Officer with the Canadian Foreign Ministry and First Secretary, Stockholm. Mr Barnes has also worked for the United Nations and non-governmental sector in South Sudan.

Mr Barnes holds a Bachelor of Arts from the Australian National University and a Graduate Diploma from Stockholm University. He is expected to take up his appointment in June.

I thank former High Commissioner Joanna Adamson for her strong contribution since 2013 in advancing Australia’s interests in West Africa.

Media enquiries

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