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New ambassador to France appointed

The new ambassador is career diplomat Caroline Bilkey.

Foreign Affairs Minister Nanaia Mahuta today announced the appointment of Caroline Bilkey as New Zealand’s next Ambassador to France and the OECD.

“Aotearoa New Zealand and France have a shared history, and enjoy a strong, collaborative partnership. This includes a strong trade and economic relationship, a shared commitment to support the Pacific; action on climate change; strengthening the multilateral system; ongoing work on the Christchurch Call; and warm people-to-people links,” Nanaia Mahuta said.

New Zealand embassy in Paris

Caroline Bilkey is a career diplomat who has held the position of Assistant Secretary and Director of the MFAT Auckland office since 2018. She has served as New Zealand’s Ambassador to Brazil and Suriname and New Zealand High Commissioner to Samoa. Ms Bilkey was also the Director Congressional Affairs at New Zealand Embassy, Washington, and her Wellington-based leadership positions include Chief of Protocol, Special Representative for the Pacific Islands Forum, and Deputy Director of the Legal Division.

As Permanent Representative to the Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD), Ms Bilkey will support New Zealand’s focus on economic recovery post-COVID, as well as key policy challenges such as the intergration of well-being and inclusivity considerations into the work of the OECD, and efforts to tax the digital economy.

“We know that sustaining our diplomatic networks are more important than ever as we collectively combat COVID-19. Ms Bilkey’s appointment will further strengthen our relationships with global partners at this crucial time and into the future,” Nanaia Mahuta said.

Ms Bilkey will also be accredited to Monaco, Portugal, and Senegal.

Image Credit (NZ Embassy in Paris): By Moonik – Own work, CC BY-SA 3.0

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