Wednesday, February 28, 2007

NZ Prime Minister to meet George W Bush

It appears in the NZ Herald that New Zealand Prime Minister Helen Clark is to meet with United States President George W Bush later this month. I hope she is up there do do a deal on some F16's and free trade agreement.

Helen Clark's office confirmed early today that she will meet President Bush during a visit to Washington on March 20-21. If she pops by LA maybe there will be a party at the Consul Generals place..... Wonder if she will be flying on her Air Force Boeing 757 or Air NZ?

The visit signals a continuing thawing of relations, with both countries appearing to concentrate on increased co-operation towards common goals rather than New Zealand's contentious anti-nuclear policy.

She is also likely to have talks with Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice, although that meeting is not yet confirmed. Wonder if she will be bringing Winston with her?

Helen Clark said she was looking forward to speaking with President Bush and other senior members of his administration.

"New Zealand and the United States enjoy a strong and mature friendship built on common values and a long history of working together in many areas," she said.

"Our world faces major security, economic, energy and environmental challenges in the 21st century.

"New Zealand values the opportunity to have dialogue with and work alongside the United States on many of these issues."

After meeting President Bush, the Prime Minister will visit Chicago and Seattle.

Helen Clark said she would look to promote New Zealand's science, technology, investment, education and tourism linkages with the US in the two cities.

The US is New Zealand's second largest trade partner.

Helen Clark last visited Washington in 2002, but has since met President Bush several times on the sidelines of the Asia Pacific Economic Co-operation (APEC) forum.

I hope she can make some progress and get some business done.

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