Australian Commonwealth Coat of Arms

Visit to Australia by the Foreign Minister of Ghana

Media release

30 June 2010

Today, Wednesday 30 June, I met with Alhaji Muhammad Mumuni, Minister of Foreign Affairs and Regional Integration of Ghana.

Minister Mumuni is visiting Australia as a Guest of the Australian Government.

Minister Mumuni is making the first full bilateral visit to Australia by a Ghanaian Foreign Minister. I most recently met Minister Mumuni in November 2009 at the Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting (CHOGM) in Trinidad and Tobago.

Australia and Ghana share a warm, friendly relationship based on a long history of engagement, strengthening commercial links and cooperation in regional and international fora, including the United Nations, the Commonwealth and the World Trade Organization.

Minister Mumuni and I discussed ways to advance our bilateral relationship and exchanged views on issues of common interest and concern, including Zimbabwe.

Ghana is a major contributor to peace and security in Africa.

Minister Mumuni is the current Chair of the Commonwealth Ministerial Action Group, of which Australia is a member.

We also had a wide-ranging discussion on matters of importance to the Commonwealth and planning for the next Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting in Perth in October 2011.

Ghana is a valued partner for Australia in our wider engagement with Africa, not only because of our close economic and historical ties, but also as a result of its leadership in West Africa.

Ghana is a major centre of Australian mineral resources activity in Africa. Ghana is Australia's third largest export market in sub-Saharan Africa. Australian exports to Ghana totalled $125 million in 2009.

Australia is also committed to assisting Ghana tackle its development challenges and is providing assistance in education, agriculture and capacity-building in the natural resources sector. Ghana is also the first country in Africa to host Australian Youth Ambassadors for Development.

Later today, Minister Mumuni and I will farewell the latest batch of Australia's Youth Ambassadors at a reception at Parliament House, including to Kenya and Ghana.

Minister Mumuni visited Perth earlier this week and will travel to Sydney tomorrow for further meetings. He leaves Australia on Friday 2 July.

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