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New Zealand Officials Following Up on Stronger Ties with U.S.

December 8, 2010

New Zealand’s defence minister, Wayne Mapp, visited U.S. Pacific Command (PACOM) last week and held discussions with the PACOM commander, Admiral Robert Willard. He was the first Kiwi defence minister to visit PACOM in the last two decades, yet another landmark in the improvement in relations between the two nations. He then came to Washington, D.C., for meetings with U.S. Secretary of Defense Robert Gates and other senior officials.

Robert Allen, chief executive officer of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Trade (MFAT), also visited Washington last week for talks with counterparts aimed at implementing plans supporting the Wellington Declaration signed by U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton and New Zealand Foreign Minister Murray McCully last month. Allen was also consulting on plans for advancing the Trans-Pacific Partnership trade negotiations.

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