26 March 2024

Acting Public Service Commissioner Heather Baggott today announced the appointment of Mr Bede Corry as the Secretary of Foreign Affairs and Trade and Chief Executive, Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Trade (MFAT).

“I am very pleased to appoint Mr Corry to this role,” said Ms Baggott.

“He is an accomplished diplomat and public service leader. In a career spanning 35 years, Mr Corry has held two of the country’s most significant offshore postings and is well equipped to advance New Zealand’s Foreign Affairs and Trade strategic objectives.”

The Secretary of Foreign Affairs and Trade is responsible for delivering on the Government’s foreign policy, international trade policy and international climate change policy objectives as well as contributing to New Zealand’s broader security, economic and environmental objectives. The Secretary will also lead and manage operations at the Ministry, which has about 1800 staff and a network of 58 posts in 51 countries. 


Mr Corry is currently based in Washington as the Ambassador to the United States of America, a role he has held since September 2022. Mr Corry was previously New Zealand’s High Commissioner in the United Kingdom, and before that Deputy Chief Executive and Deputy Secretary at MFAT. Prior to this, he was Deputy Secretary of Defence, Policy and Planning at the Ministry of Defence.

“Mr Corry is expert in managing international relationships, balancing competing interests and has worked closely and effectively with successive Prime Ministers and Ministers,” said Ms Baggott.

“He has a clear view of the current opportunities and challenges for the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Trade and has the credibility and skill to build effective relationships with his peers, Ministers and stakeholders to influence and achieve outcomes aligned to government priorities.”

Mr Corry holds a Bachelor of Arts with First Class Honours from Victoria University of Wellington. He will take up his new role on 30 June 2024 for five years.


Mr Corry has been Ambassador to the US, based in Washington DC, since 2022.

Prior to this (2020—2022) he was High Commissioner for New Zealand in the UK.

For five years (2015—2020) Mr Corry was Deputy Chief Executive, Policy at MFAT.

He was Deputy Secretary, Australia, Pacific, Europe, Middle East and Africa Group at MFAT from 2014—2015.

From 2012 to 2014 Mr Corry was Deputy Secretary of Defence, Policy and Planning at the Ministry of Defence.

Prior to this, Mr Corry held a number of roles at MFAT, including Ambassador to Thailand (2009—2012).

He was Director, Australian Division, from 2006 to 2009 and Director, Chief Executive’s Office from 2004 to 2006.

For four years (2000—2004) Mr Corry was Counsellor, New Zealand Embassy (Washington DC).

From 1997 to 2000 he was Private Secretary to the Minister of Foreign Affairs and Trade.

He was in the Economic and Trade Negotiations Divisions between 1995 and 1997 and the New Zealand High Commission (Canberra) from 1992 to 1995.

He was in MFAT’s Environment Division (1990—1992) and started his public service career in the Europe Division in 1989.


Media queries: Grahame Armstrong 021 940 457 or grahame.armstrong@publicservice.govt.nz