National congratulates Dame Annette King on her appointment as New Zealand's High Commissioner to Australia, National's Foreign Affairs and Trade Spokesperson, Todd McClay says.

"The role of High Commissioner in Australia is a very important one and Dame Annette certainly has the experience to build on our relationship with Australia and provide the care and maintenance that is needed.

"New Zealand’s relationship with Australia has floundered as a result of a number of unnecessary disagreements and mishandlings by the Labour-led Government.

"It will be important for our new High Commissioner to repair any damage that has been done over the last year. It is in the best interests of Australia and New Zealand that our two governments continue to have respect for each other and work closely together.

"I am pleased that the strong objections to political appointments previously held by Foreign Affairs Minister Winston Peters have been dropped.

“Given the importance of our membership of the Five Eyes, Mr Peters should in future not rule out similar appointments of effective and appropriate people to maximise the influence that membership of the Five Eyes offers New Zealand.”

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