Today I announce the appointment of Mr John Feakes as Australia's next High Commissioner to Fiji.
Australia and Fiji share an enduring friendship, underpinned by strong people-to-people links and significant trade and investment ties. Over 65,000 Fijians live in Australia and more than 360,000 Australians visit Fiji annually. Australia is also one of Fiji's most significant economic partners, with two-way trade and investment totalling around $4.2 billion annually.
Australia is Fiji's largest bilateral aid donor, providing $76.9 million in development assistance in 2016-17, including our ongoing response to Tropical Cyclone Winston. Australia is also providing $6 million to Fiji for its Presidency of the 23rd Conference of Parties of the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (COP23).
Mr Feakes is a senior career officer with the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade (DFAT) and was most recently High Commissioner to Kenya. He has served overseas in Lebanon, Jordan, Afghanistan, Papua New Guinea and the United States. In Canberra Mr Feakes has held a range of positions including Assistant Secretary, Policy Planning Branch and Assistant Secretary, Strategic Affairs Branch.
Mr Feakes holds a Bachelor of Arts (Honours) degree from the University of New South Wales. He is expected to take up his appointment in November 2017.
I thank outgoing High Commissioner Margaret Twomey for her outstanding contribution to rebuilding Australia's relationship with Fiji and to advancing regional cooperation in the Pacific.
- Minister's office: (02) 6277 7500
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