Australia Nominates First Ambassador to Morocco

Australia has effectively established an embassy in Rabat and proceeded to the appointment of Berenice Owen-Jones first Australian resident Ambassador to Morocco.

This was announced in a statement by Australia’s foreign Minister Julie Bishop. “Australia and Morocco enjoy close ties and celebrated the 40th anniversary of diplomatic relations in 2016. We share strong people-to-people links, with many thousands of Australians visiting Morocco each year,” she said in the statement.

The Australian Minister underscored the importance of establishing an Embassy in Rabat saying that this will be “an important addition to Australia’s diplomatic presence in Africa and part of the single largest expansion of our diplomatic network in 40 years.”

She expressed hope that the embassy in Morocco will lead efforts to enhance bilateral ties and open new areas of cooperation, including expanding trade and investment links in food and agriculture, infrastructure planning and sustainable development, mining, oil and gas, and health.

The Australian Minister also lauded Morocco’s efforts to fight global terrorism and violent extremism.

“We work together as members of the Global Coalition to Defeat ISIS. The new Embassy will enhance our ability to collaborate further on counterterrorism and security issues,” she added.

Berenice Owen-Jones, who is expected to take office in June 2017, is a career officer with the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade (DFAT) and was most recently Director of Studies, Diplomatic Academy. In Canberra Ms Owen-Jones has held a range of positions including, Director, Security Policy and Clearances Section. She served overseas with DFAT at the Australian Embassy in Paris.

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