The National Office and Branch Activities
The Standing Committee met with the United States Ambassador, HE Charles J. Swindells, and members of the embassy diplomatic staff, on 30 November. This was a follow-up to the Ambassador's presentation to the NZIIA on 23 August on the theme of anti-Americanism (which is reproduced elsewhere in this issue).
The Committee had its final meeting for the year on 6 December when it considered the schedule of National Office-sponsored meetings in 2005. In early preparation is a mix of seminars and workshop events next year on topics as diverse as the outcome of the US Presidential election, New Zealand's bilateral relations with India and Japan, the place of preferential trade agreements in New Zealand's trading network, enlargement of the European Union and its implications for New Zealand, and the social impacts of globalisation.
Other highlights anticipated in 2005 are the launch of a book of essays on New Zealand's relations with South-east Asia, an occasion to acknowledge the notable contributions of Sir George Laking and Frank Corner to the formation and implementation of New Zealand foreign policy, and the fourth in the series of annual foreign policy lectures that is proving so successful. …