Republic of the Philippines

50 Hobson Street, Thorndon, Wellington, New Zealand 6011

PHL Ambassador joins Diplomatic Reception for Prime Minister John Key and Mrs. Bronagh Key

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As part of the Philippine Embassy’s closer engagement with the Government and Diplomatic Corps in New Zealand, Ambassador Virginia H. Benavidez joined the Heads of Diplomatic Mission and Spouses at a Reception in honour of Prime Minister The Right Honourable John Key and Mrs. Bronagh Key on 17 March 2015 at Te Papa Marae in Wellington. It was a special and meaningful evening as the Ambassadors, High Commissioners, Spouses, Chargé d’Affaires and Acting High Commissioners met and interacted with the Prime Minister, Mrs. Key, Minister of Foreign Affairs Murray McCully, officials from the Department of the Prime Minister and Cabinet, Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Trade (MFAT), Ministry of Defence, hosts from Te Papa and other esteemed guests.

The Dean of the Diplomatic Corps and High Commissioner of Canada to New Zealand, H.E. Caroline Chrétien welcomed Prime Minister and Mrs. Key, officials and guests on behalf of all Heads of Mission (HOMs) and Spouses. She thanked Prime Minister and Mrs. Key for accepting the HOMs’ invitation to this special event in their honour. Speaking in behalf of the Diplomatic Corps, she highlighted, among others, the shared values of peace, security, democracy and good governance, human rights and the rule of law between New Zealand and the 46 countries with diplomatic mission in Wellington. New Zealand’s stunning sceneries, friendliness of the people, ease of doing business and quality of life in the country’s multicultural setting contribute to a good posting in Aotearoa. New Zealand’s increasingly important roles in the United Nations Security Council following its decisive win and in the Asia Pacific region and its active engagement with the leaders of G20 and hosting of visits of Heads of State and Government of China, Japan, Canada and Germany last year were also cited. High Commissioner Chrétien was requested by the Heads of Diplomatic Mission to thank the Prime Minister “for your personal accessibility and your willingness to take the time to spend with us at various events throughout the parliamentary, political and social year. I am pleased to say your Ministers and officials are also very open to engaging with the Corps, which makes our job here so much easier.”

Prime Minister John Key conveyed his appreciation and that of his wife to the Heads of Mission and their Spouses for the reception given in their honour and for the wonderful opportunity to meet and interact with them. Acknowledging the crucial roles and contributions of Minister of Foreign Affairs McCully, the MFAT Team and all those who worked hard especially in the successful and strong campaign for a seat at the United Nations Security Council this year, Prime Minister Key gave an overview of New Zealand’s platform and involvement in the regional and world stage and shared the priorities and principles that would govern his country’s actions and voices in the international community, groupings and organizations. Prime Minister Key and Mrs. Key and officials mingled and talked with the Heads of Mission, Spouses, representatives of the Diplomatic Corps and other guests. High Commissioner Chrétien presented a silver souvenir plate to Prime Minister Key as a token of appreciation from the Heads of Diplomatic Mission resident in New Zealand.

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