The visiting diplomats and other officials from the Kingdom of the Netherlands, the Republic of the Philippines, Ireland, and the High Commissioner of Malaysia, with the King’s Representative Sir Tom Marsters and Lady Marsters in Rarotonga on Tuesday. MFAI/23092002
Diplomats from four countries presented their letters of credence to the King’s Representative Sir Tom Marsters this week.
The Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Immigration (MFAI)
facilitated a presentation of credentials ceremony by Ambassadors from the
Kingdom of the Netherlands, the Republic of the Philippines, Ireland, and the
High Commissioner of Malaysia, in Rarotonga on Tuesday.
In a statement, MFAI said the King’s Representative
received letters of credence from Ard van der Vorst, Ambassador of the Kingdom
of the Netherlands to the Cook Islands, Kira Azucena, Ambassador of the
Republic of the Philippines to the Cook Islands, Jane Connolly, Ambassador of
Ireland to the Cook Islands, and Mazita Marzuki, High Commissioner of Malaysia
to the Cook Islands.
These diplomats are based in Wellington, New Zealand.
director for the International and Trade Division, Mackenzi Wichman, said: “MFAI
are pleased to conduct diplomatic activities and accreditation of foreign
representatives in the Cook Islands with this week’s ceremony supporting
ongoing bilateral conversations between the Cook Islands and all four
Cook Islands and the Kingdom of the Netherlands established diplomatic
relations in August 2011. This followed upon advice through diplomatic channels
that the Netherlands had recognised the Cook Islands as a sovereign,
King’s Representative Marsters was the country’s deputy
prime minister and Minister of Foreign Affairs and Immigration when the two
countries formalised diplomatic ties.
“For some time now, the Cook Islands has been working
to deepen cooperative and other ties with the Kingdom of the Netherlands and
other members of the European Union and that process will continue. The Cook Islands welcomes the establishment
of diplomatic relations with the Netherlands which will provide an excellent
foundation for future cooperation between our two countries,” Marsters said in
The Cook Islands and the Philippines established
formal diplomatic ties in December 2011.
The two countries have always maintained friendly
relations and have supported each other in many common issues affecting them
such as maritime safety and climate change.
The establishment of diplomatic ties in 2011 further cemented
this friendship and the two countries looked forward to deepening the
cooperation existing between them.
The country hosts a number of Filipino citizens in the
professional and service sectors.
Cook Islands formalised
diplomatic relation with Malaysia in 1992, during the early days of the
country’s foray into international diplomatic engagement in its own right.
Over the years,
bilateral co-operation between the two countries have primarily focused on
technical and capability development opportunities for Cook Islands across a
broad number of areas, delivered through the Malaysia Technical Co-operation
Program (MTCP). In the regional fora, the two countries have interacted through
the Pacific Islands Forum (PIF), Malaysia being a long-time dialogue partner of
the PIF and collaboration. In the multilateral fora, collaboration has been on
various platforms including the Asia Development Bank (ADB), World Health
Organisation (WHO), the International Maritime Organisation (IMO), the United
Nations Economic Science and Culture Organisation (UNESCO), the Food and
Agriculture Organisation (FAO) amongst others.
The Cook Islands and Ireland formalised diplomatic
relations in November last year, committing to strengthening bilateral and
multilateral co-operation between the two countries.