(Reply due 16 December 1997)

Jeanette FITZSIMMONS to the Minister of Foreign Affairs and Trade:

Has David Aaron, a Clinton Administration official from the United States, made any visits to New Zealand during the last three years; if so, what was the date and purpose of each visit and which members of Parliament and officials, by name or position, did he meet during each visit?


Rt Hon Don McKINNON (Minister of Foreign Affairs and Trade) replied:

I understand that Mr Aaron, the US Ambassador to the OECD [1], visited New Zealand on 10-11 July 1997 for discussions about a range of issues under consideration in the OECD [2]. The visit was organised by the US Embassy.

[1] He's also "Special Envoy for Cryptography", charged with persuading other countries to fall in line with the US's encryption policies.

[2] Given that New Zealand has (through the GCSB and MFAT) stricter export controls on encryption than the US, you have to wonder why he bothered coming here, apart from telling them "Well done, guys".