Today I announce the appointment of Ms Erika Thompson as Australia’s new Ambassador to Colombia.
Australia and Colombia enjoy a strong and growing bilateral relationship based on common values, growing economic and scientific links and strong law enforcement cooperation.
Our two countries work together through international institutions to promote the rules-based international order, an open international economy and democratic values.
Australia, through the Australian Federal Police, and Colombia continue to protect our communities from transnational crime through a highly effective and long-standing law enforcement partnership.
The trade and investment relationship between Australia and Colombia continues to grow, boosted by the opening of the Australian Embassy in Bogotá in 2017. Around 100 Australian companies are active in Colombia, investing in mining, health, infrastructure and education and generating around 7,000 jobs. Australian services exports are principally in education, with over 18,000 Colombians studying in Australia, making Colombia our seventh largest global market for international students and the second largest for English language students (ELICOS).
Ms Thompson is a career officer with the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade and was most recently Chargé d’Affaires ad interim, Australian Embassy, Madrid. She has previously served overseas as Deputy Head of Mission at the Australian Embassy Ankara, and in London and Brasilia. Ms Thompson has also worked in London as the Deputy Head of the Counter Daesh Communications Department in the British Foreign and Commonwealth Office.
Ms Thompson holds a Bachelor of Commerce (Economics) and a Bachelor of Arts (Political Science) from the University of Sydney.
I thank former Ambassador Sophie Davies for her contributions to advancing Australia’s interests in Colombia since 2017.