Members of Diplomatic Corps bid farewell to outgoing envoy

Azlan Othman

The Dean of the Diplomatic Corps and Ambassador of Oman to Brunei Darussalam Sheikh Ahmed bin Hashel bin Ahmdeh bin Hashel Al-Maskari praised outgoing Australian High Commissioner to Brunei Darussalam Tiffany McDonald for the advancement in bilateral relations between Brunei Darussalam and Australia.

“We would like to congratulate the outgoing envoy for contributing towards the advancements in Brunei-Australia relations during her tenure, including cooperation in areas of education, economy, culture, health and defence,” he said during the virtual farewell.

“We observed that during her term, Australia remained one of the popular study destinations for Bruneians. In addition, despite the COVID disruptions, Australian agriculture and food exports enjoyed a significant market share in Brunei,” he added.

“Moreover, during the second COVID-19 wave, the Australian government donated 100,000 doses of the AstraZeneca vaccine to the Sultanate. The sharing of Australian-manufactured vaccines with Brunei demonstrated the close relations between the countries. Australia and Brunei worked together to address the mental health impacts of COVID, identified by His Majesty Sultan Haji Hassanal Bolkiah Mu’izzaddin Waddaulah ibni Al-Marhum Sultan Haji Omar ‘Ali Saifuddien Sa’adul Khairi Waddien, Sultan and Yang Di-Pertuan of Brunei Darussalam and Australia’s Prime Minister Scott Morrison, as the ‘shadow pandemic’ requiring urgent attention.

“In the same context, the Australian government made other contributions, such as personal protective equipment (PPE) and medical cabinets to support Brunei’s COVID response, all significant acts of diplomatic courtesy reflected the cordial relationship between the Brunei and Australia,” he said.

“This year we followed how Australia and Brunei furthered their bilateral ties by working together on key regional issues during the course of Brunei’s Chairmanship of ASEAN, including by hosting the first annual ASEAN-Australian Summit and announcing Australia as a Comprehensive Strategic Partner of ASEAN.”

McDonald gave a farewell remark and extended her appreciation to His Majesty, members of the royal family, the Government of Brunei Darussalam and the Diplomatic Corps for the cooperation and support during her tenure in Brunei Darussalam.

The outgoing envoy also thanked the Dean of the Diplomatic Corps and the diplomatic community for the initiative in organising the farewell.

McDonald presented her Letter of Credence to His Majesty on September 10, 2020.

Members of the Diplomatic Corps at the virtual farewell. PHOTO: AZLAN OTHMAN