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Upgrade for Australian Government buildings overseas

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FOR MEDIA 29 June 1995

Upgrade for Australian Government buildings overseas.

The Minister for Administrative Services, Frank Walker, announced today that subject to the normal review process of the Public Works Committee, building projects would proceed on a number of Government operations overseas.

Mr Walker said the projects offered enormous potential for Australian suppliers and contractors, and that the new and refurbished buildings would strengthen Australia’s overseas property portfolio.

• In Geneva, a new Chancery will be built for Australia’s Permanent Mission, at a cost of $22.44 million. The Chancery provides normal consular functions and is the centre of Australia’s representation to the United Nations, including Ambassadors to GATT (World Trade Organisation), Disarmament and Environment. The existing Chancery must be vacated when the lease expires in March 1999.

• In Shanghai, new apartments and recreational facilities are to be built for Australian Consulate-General staff at a cost of $10.5 million. This project has become necessary because of severe shortages of accommodation and escalating rents.

• In Jakarta, an apartment complex will be built to accommodate Australian Embassy staff at a cost of $25.7 million. The complex will offset spiralling rental costs in Jakarta, currently $2.2 million a year.

• In Kuala Lumpur, ten new apartments will be built for Australian High Commission staff at a cost of $11.3 million. The development is necessary to alleviate the cost of accommodating staff in deteriorating free-standing houses.

• In Washington, major renovations will be undertaken on the Australian Embassy building at a cost of $16 million. The existing building, constructed 25 years ago, does not comply with Government occupational health and safety standards, and offers inadequate provision for current and future technology.

Media contact: Claire Tedeschi, Mr Walker’s office. Phone (06) 277 7600.