Today I announce the appointment of Ms Rowan Ainsworth as Australia’s next Consul-General in Kolkata.
India is at the forefront of Australia’s international partnerships and our engagement in the Indo-Pacific region. Australia’s landmark Comprehensive Strategic Partnership with India will result in a strengthened security partnership and help increase our trade and investment links. In 2019, India was Australia’s eighth-largest trading partner and fifth-largest export market.
The Consulate-General in Kolkata plays a key role in furthering Australia’s trade, commercial and investment interests in the eastern and north east Indian states of West Bengal, Arunachal Pradesh, Assam, Bihar, Chhattisgarh, Jharkhand, Manipur, Meghalaya, Mizoram, Nagaland, Odisha, Sikkim and Tripura.
Australia’s economic links with West Bengal and neighbouring states are substantial and expanding, particularly in the mining and Mining Equipment Technology and Services sectors. The India Economic Strategy identified West Bengal among 10 priority states to expand our trade and investment links.
Ms Ainsworth is a career officer with the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade (DFAT) and was most recently Counsellor, Australian Embassy, Paris. She has previously served overseas in Moscow and Tokyo.
Ms Ainsworth holds a Master of Arts and Bachelor of Arts from the University of Sydney.
I thank outgoing Consul-General Andrew Ford for his work establishing the Consulate and advancing Australia’s interests in India.