Blumsky new high commissioner to Niue

17:00, Sep 16 2010

Former Wellington mayor Mark Blumsky has been appointed New Zealand's new high commissioner to Niue, launching a career in diplomacy after a two-year absence from politics.

He is already involved in tourism development on the tiny Pacific island, and is there at present.

Foreign Affairs Minister Murray McCully said New Zealand and Niue were working closely together to help realise the island's full tourism potential.

"In recent months Mr Blumsky has been leading the industry development project that was agreed as part of New Zealand's assistance programme for Niue," he said.

Mr Blumsky was Wellington mayor for two terms from 1995 to 2001, before entering Parliament as an opposition National Party list MP in 2005. He quit national politics in 2008 after just one term, disillusioned over the "tribal" nature of the profession. A former salesman and founder of Mischief shoes, Mr Blumsky has already made several visits to Niue, but did not return calls from there yesterday.

Niue is one of the least populated countries in the world, with just 1500 residents. It shares strong political ties with New Zealand.

Mr Blumsky replaces acting high commissioner John Bryan.

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