Ambra Dickie, High Commissioner for Canada in Brunei Darussalam
Welcome to the website of the High Commission of Canada in Brunei Darussalam.
As Canada progresses with its Indo-Pacific strategy centred on our strong relations with partners in the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) and embarks upon important Canada-ASEAN Free Trade Agreement negotiations, it is my enormous pleasure to be appointed to advance Canada-Brunei relations during this critical period.
Our two countries established diplomatic relations on May 7, 1984 when Brunei gained its independence. Since 1984, Canada and Brunei’s warm and effective bilateral relationship has continued to develop and our two countries have worked closely together within ASEAN, the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC), the ASEAN Regional Forum (ARF), and in the Commonwealth.
The year 2022 marks the 45th anniversary of relations between Canada and ASEAN. An ASEAN Dialogue Partner since 1977, Canada works with ASEAN nations on political and security issues, regional integration, economic interests, inter-faith dialogue, transnational crime and counterterrorism, disaster risk reduction and other priority areas. Canada’s growing regional commitments have also guided our ambition to become an ASEAN Strategic Partner and served to further expand the scope of our cooperation. Since the beginning of the pandemic, Canada has contributed 9.5 million masks to ASEAN, including 870,000 to Brunei, as part of a CAD$4.5 million donation by Canada to ASEAN. This has provided ASEAN member nations with the critical supplies necessary for an inclusive pandemic recovery and contributed to equitable public health security across the Indo-Pacific region.
Brunei and Canada share a special interest in many areas, including education. Just days after I arrived, I was proud to have met a group of Bruneian students leaving for Canada to further their studies. These bright students have chosen Canada for its high-quality and diverse education options, and many have been recipients of the Government of Canada’s Canada-ASEAN Scholarship and Educational Exchanges for Development (SEED) Scholarship. Of the 154 students from ASEAN who were offered SEED scholarships for the 2022 – 2023 session, 9 are from Brunei.
This year too, we have announced the selection of Ms. Lailatul Zubaidah Hussain, founder of the IMPIAN Project, as the champion of Canada’s #SheLeadsHere campaign in Brunei. The campaign aims to open doors for young woman advocates and leaders, in all their diversity. I look forward to working with our #SheLeadsHere champion to support her impressive efforts to advance the rights and education of those living with disabilities.
In trade, an increasing number of Canadian companies are seeking to invest in Brunei or are exploring opportunities in various sectors, including education, ICT, life sciences, aerospace, cleantech, and oil and gas. Deepened Canada-Brunei cooperation will contribute to the diversification of Brunei’s economy and help advance Wawasan 2035, Brunei’s vision for the future, which prioritises education and sustainable economic growth, and aligns with Canada’s commitments to promote gender equality, youth development, climate change, and investing in growth that works for everyone.
As I begin my first year in Brunei, I am looking forward to building on the already warm relations between Canada and Brunei Darussalam in areas of mutual interest and explore more avenues to enhance our relationship.
My family and I have already been embraced by the warm Brunei hospitality as we start our new lives here. We are eager to meet more Bruneians while we explore the numerous amazing and unique experiences this country has to offer.
High Commissioner for Canada in Brunei Darussalam
Ambra Dickie (BA [Political Science], Simon Fraser University, 2004; International Program Diploma Hons [Political Science], Sciences Po (Paris), 2003; MA [Political Science], Dalhousie University, 2005) joined Foreign Affairs and International Trade Canada in 2006.
During her time at Headquarters, she has served as departmental spokesperson on a wide range of issues in the Media Relations Office and then joined the Afghanistan Task Force, also as spokesperson. She also worked as senior adviser in the Defence and Security Relations Division, leading on Canada-United States defence cooperation, and on issues related to the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO).
Abroad, she has been posted to Canada’s Embassy to Brazil in Brasilia, responsible for human rights, transparency, foreign policy and public diplomacy. Most recently, Ms. Dickie served at the Embassy to Japan in Tokyo, as the lead on foreign policy, regional dynamics, and bilateral political, security and defence relations.
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