New Zealand High Commission New Delhi, India

Rt Hon Jim Bolger visits Bangladesh, Bhutan and Nepal

Jim Bolger with Bangladeshi PM Sheikh Hasina

A New Zealand delegation led by New Zealand’s former Prime Minister and now the Prime Minister’s Special Envoy, Rt Hon Jim Bolger, has concluded a successful one-week visit to Bangladesh, Bhutan and Nepal. The visit was part of an effort  to promote New Zealand’s candidature for a non-permanent seat on the UN Security Council for a two-year term in 2015-16. He was accompanied by Tane Waetford, of the United Nations, Human Rights and Commonwealth Division of the New Zealand Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Trade, and Esther Guy-Meakin, the High Commission’s Second Secretary.

In Bangladesh, on March 23 and 24, the delegation was privileged to meet with Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina and Foreign Minister Abul Hassan Mahmood Ali, among other dignitaries. This was followed by a two-day visit to Bhutan (25-26 March), where the team met with Prime Minister Tshering Tobgay, Foreign Minister Rinzin Dorje and other key members of government. Nepal was the last port of call on this packed visit. While in Kathmandu on March 27 and 28, the delegation met with the Nepalese President Ram Baran Yadav, Prime Minister Sushil Koirala and Foreign Minister Mahendra Bahadur Pandey.

The New Zealand delegation were accorded a warm reception in the three capitals, a reflection of the valued relationship New Zealand has with Bangladesh, Bhutan and Nepal. The visit to all three countries reaffirmed the warm and friendly relationship New Zealand enjoys with them. It also offered an occasion to discuss some common challenges and opportunities. New Zealand and the three countries commonly place significant importance on the UN and the multilateral system.  

New Zealand is one of three countries in the Western European and Others electoral group seeking election to two seats on the United Nations Security Council. The elections will be held in New York during the UN General Assembly in October 2014. New Zealand was last a member of the UNSC in 1993-4.

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