Diplomatic moves reflect new focus

THE Federal Government has announced it will open new diplomatic posts in Accra (Ghana), Kuwait City and Port of Spain (Trinidad and Tobago) while closing posts in Barbados and Venezuela.

A statement from the office of Foreign Minister Alexander Downer says moving Australia’s representation in the Caribbean from Barbados to Port of Spain reflects Trinidad and Tobago’s position as the Caribbean’s major industrialising country. It is also a sign of growing Australian investment in the country, which includes commercial development of its oil and gas resources.

The statement says the post in Accra will strengthen Australia’s presence in Africa and help service important Australian commercial interests in West Africa, including substantial Australian investments in Ghana’s mining sector.

The decision to close the post in Caracas was influenced by the need for the Government, on an ongoing basis, to adjust its global resources to meet new priorities.

The changes are a result of a review of Australia’s overseas representation and will be phased in over the next 18 months.

Chinese visit for Williams

ATTORNEY-GENERAL Daryl Williams is to visit China as a guest of the Chinese Minister for Justice, H E Zhang Fusen, from July 20-25  as part of a pattern of biennial ministerial visits

The visits, which have occurred over the last six years by the Australian Attorney-General and the Chinese Minister for Justice, are aimed at strengthening the bilateral relationship in law, legal services and legal cooperation.

Global standards for ALC

THE Australian Logistics Council has established a working group to promote the use of EAN.UCC standards in logistics chains in Australia.

The working group will identify and implement demonstration projects and develop practical guidelines for the industry. The system is recognised in 128 countries and already used by many Australian industries including grocery, retail, hardware, pharmaceutical, liquor, furniture, steel and meat.

In Australia, the EAN.UCC system is administered by EAN Australia.

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