The British High Commission is pleased to announce that the RT Hon Philip Hammond MP, Secretary of State for Foreign & Commonwealth Affairs, will visit New Zealand on 3 February 2015.
During his visit, the Foreign Secretary is scheduled to call on New Zealand’s Prime Minister John Key; Foreign Affairs Minister Murray McCully and the Leader of the Opposition, Andrew Little.
The Foreign Secretary will also present to the Speaker of Parliament on behalf of the people of New Zealand with a plaque honouring the 16 recipients of the Victoria Cross awarded during World war One who came from New Zealand.
Speaking in advance of the visit, HE Jonathan Sinclair, the British High Commissioner to New Zealand, said:
“The Foreign Secretary makes his first official visit to New Zealand at a crucial time. Rarely has the international system faced so many challenges - Ebola, extremism and regional tension to name but a few.
With New Zealand joining the United Nations Security Council on 1 January, our two governments are already working in concert in New York to address these many challenges to global security and prosperity. But the Foreign Secretary wanted to come to Wellington to engage directly with one of our closest friends and partners on this broad range of issues.
The Foreign Secretary will not only discuss pressing matters of global concern and national security. He will see the strength and relevance of the modern bilateral relationship – underpinned by shared values epitomised in the commemoration of sacrifices by both countries one hundred years ago.
Those values and bonds remain strong today. Our military forces work hand in glove. The UK is New Zealand’s largest trading partner – including goods and services - in the EU. Our people-to-people links in fields such as science, art and technology are deep and broad. And we share a love of sport: 2015 with the Cricket and Rugby World Cups promises to be one to remember.”