On 19 April 2012 Australian Minister of Foreign Affairs, Senator Bob Carr, was in Malta where he met with the Prime Minister Dr Lawrence Gonzi and Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Foreign Affairs Dr Tonio Borg.
During meetings in Valletta with Senator Carr, Dr Borg said that “the friendship between the prople of Malta and Auustralia is a crucial ingredient to further strengthen the political, economic and cultural relations between the two countries”.
Shortly after the meeting, Dr Borg said that both sides agreed that although Malta and Australia are grographically far apart, nonetheless they are very close in regard to diplomatic relations and friendship.
In a statement issued before his visit, Senator Carr said he was pleased to be visiting Malta on his first visit to Europe as Foreign Minister. “As Premier of New South Wales I developed a strong relationship with the Maltese community whose members have contributed a great deal to Australian society. I look forward to visiting Malta and to the honour of meeting with the Prime Minister and Deputy Prime Minister and Foreign Minister.” he said
“Australia and Malta have a long history of cooperation and our common values and strong community ties are key to this,” Senator Carr said.
Senator Bob Carr was the longest continuously serving Premier in New South Wales history. He served as Leader of the Opposition from 1988 until his election as Premier in March 1995. He was re-elected in 1999 and again in March 2003 securing an historic third four-year term. He retired from politics in 2005 after over 10 years as Premier.
During these 10 years the State Government set new records for spending on infrastructure, became the first government in the State’s history to retire debt, hosted the world’s best Olympics in 2000 and achieved the nation’s best school literacy levels. Forbes magazine called Bob Carr a “dragon slayer” for his landmark tort law reforms.
As Premier he introduced the world’s first carbon trading scheme and curbed the clearing of native vegetation as anti-greenhouse measures. He was a member of the International Task Force on Climate Change convened by Tony Blair, and was made a life member of the Wilderness Society in 2003. He has also received the World Conservation Union International Parks Merit Award for creating 350 new national parks.
Bob Carr has received the Fulbright Distinguished Fellow Award Scholarship. He has served as Honorary Scholar of the Australian American Leadership Dialogue. He is the author of Thoughtlines (2002), What Australia Means to Me (2003), and My Reading Life (2008).
In March 2012 he was designated by Prime Minister Julia Gillard as Australia’s Foreign Minister. He was elected to the Australian Senate to fill a casual Senate vacancy and sworn in to the Senate and Cabinet on March 13, 2012.