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Budget 2006: China: construction of new annex to chancery in Beijing.



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MEDIA RELEASE MINISTER FOR FOREIGN AFFAIRS ALEXANDER DOWNER

FA047 9 May 2006

CHINA - CONSTRUCTION OF NEW ANNEX TO CHANCERY IN BEIJING

The Australian Government will provide $21.6 million over four years to construct a new annex to the Chancery in Beijing.

Space requirements have rapidly grown in recent years and the new building will provide new office accommodation, a conference centre and disabled access in accordance with Australian building and safety standards.

This initiative will benefit both Australian and Chinese visitors to the Australian Embassy and staff of the Australian Embassy. The security of the Australian Government’s operations overseas is paramount, and the extension will provide a highly secure and safe working environment for Australian officials and Australians accessing Embassy services in Beijing.

The design will be sympathetic to the landmark nature of the existing property and the project is scheduled for completion in mid-2010.

Media inquiries: Mr Downer’s Office Chris Kenny (02) 6277 7500 / 0419 206 890

Departmental Scott Bolitho (02) 6261 1555

Media releases and speeches are available from DFAT via the internet. http://www.dfat.gov.au/

2006-07 Portfolio Budget Statement Supporting Information statement

CHINA - CONSTRUCTION OF NEW ANNEX TO CHANCERY IN BEIJING

Why is the measure important? The annex building will provide new office accommodation, a conference centre and disabled access. Current facilities at the embassy in Beijing need to be upgraded to ensure that required health and safety standards continue to be met.

What have we done in the past? The mission operates in an overcrowded environment due to increases in staff, reflecting the importance of the bilateral relationship.

Who will benefit? This initiative will benefit both Australian and Chinese visitors to the Australian Embassy and staff of the Australian Diplomatic Mission.

When will the measure conclude? The project is scheduled to be completed in mid-2010.