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 The Permanent Repr​esentativ​e H.E. Marlene Bonnici 



Ambassado​r Marlene Bonnici has been in office as the Permanent Representative of Malta to the European Union since July 2020. She also served in the same office be​tween July 2012 and July 2018 and led the first Maltese Presidency of the EU Council in 2017. She is the first Maltese fe​male diplomat to occupy the position (twice) of Permanent Representative of Malta to the European Union. 

Ambassador Bonnici is a seasoned career diplomat. Prior to returning to Brussels in July 2020, she served as Ambassador to Germany as well as Ambassador to the Kingdom of the Netherlands and to the International Organisations based at The Hague. During the same period Bonnici was also acting as the Permanent Representative of Malta to the OPCW.

Ambassador Bonnici has also served in key senior positions within the Government of the Republic of Malta, most of which relate to Malta-EU relations. Prior to her posting to Brussels in 2012, her name was synonymous with the management of EU funds in Malta, starting in 1999 as a Counsellor and Executive Secretary of the EU Assistance Coordination Task Force  dealing with the Malta-EU Protocols and the first pre-accession instruments. In 2001 she set up the directorate to manage EU Structural and Cohesion Funds within the Office of the Prime Minister. In 2004 she became the Director General of the Planning and Priorities Co-Ordination Division and in 2011 she became Permanent Secretary for EU funds at the Office of the Prime Minister – responsible for the co-ordination of all EU Funds and other external financial instruments. Prior to that she served as a diplomat in the Embassies of Malta in Bonn and Brussels. Ambassador Bonnici’s career began in 1989 as a Teacher of German within the Ministry for Education in ​Malta. 

Ambassador Bonnici holds a First-Class Bachelor’s Degree from the University of Malta and in 1991 she was awarded a Chevening Scholarship to pursue Post Graduate Studies in Diplomatic Studies at the University of Oxford, concluding with a distinction in all subjects. She furthered her studies in European Affairs at the Institut International d’Administration Publique in Paris in 1999.

Ambassador Marlene Bonnici is married to Dr Klaus Dieter Frey and they have a daughter.

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The Deputy Permanent Representative Kathiana Bonello Ghio



Kathiana Bonello Ghio was appointed to Deputy Permanent Representative in August 2020.

Ms. Bonello Ghio first joined the Permanent Representation of Malta to the European Union in 2008. She worked in the Trade, Economic and Financial Affairs Unit at the Representation until 2014, during which time she worked on customs and trade issues, as well as economic, financial and budgetary matters. In the course of those six years, she was also responsible, for the coordination of Malta's position for the Multiannual Financial Framework 2014-2020 negotiations. 

Following the conclusion of these negotiations, she moved to the Ministry for Environment, Sustainable Development and Climate Change in Malta where she was appointed Director for Policy Development and Programme Implementation. In this role she was responsible for coordinating the ground work of the Ministry's preparations for Malta's Presidency of the Council for both Environment and the Agri-Fish Council formations, the coordination of all Malta-EU affairs in the same policy areas as well as the monitoring of EU funds implementation in the environment, climate and fisheries sectors. In 2016 she was appointed Director General for Sustainable Development, Environment and Climate, where she led the capital-based Presidency teams on Environment, Sustainable Development and Climate Change, whilst also overseeing the implementation of national policies and projects in the areas. 

Following the Presidency, she returned to Brussels to join the team of the European Commissioner for Environment, Fisheries and Maritime Affairs as the EU Commissioner's Deputy Head of Cabinet. In this role, she was, amongst other files, responsible for the Cabinet's coordination of Inter-Institutional matters, relations with the Environment Council as well as the Cabinet's work on the post-2020 Multiannual Financial Framework proposals.

Ms. Bonello Ghio holds a Masters of Science degree in Public Policy and Management from the University of London and Bachelor's of Art degree in History and Politics from the University of Nottingham.  



The Political and Security Committee Representative to the EU - Christine O'Dwyer


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Christine O’Dwyer was appointed as Malta’s Political and Security Committee Representative in January 2022. 

She previously held the post of Deputy Head of Division for Migration and Human Security at the European External Action Service. Since 2003 she has been a member of the Maltese diplomatic corps . As a temporary agent at the European External Action Service, Ms O’Dwyer has also held positions in the Human Resources Directorate as well as four years in the Policy Coordination Division, where she was first EEAS Antici and then Team Leader for the Council team in charge of the preparations of the Foreign Affairs Council meetings. 

Prior to joining the European External Action Service Ms O’Dwyer served as Director for Global Issues at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Malta in charge of multilateral affairs. Before that she was posted to the Permanent Representation of Malta to the EU where she covered both the positions of Nicolaidis and Antici. Ms O’Dwyer was Deputy Chief of Mission of the Embassy of Malta to the United States of America between September 2006 and September 2009. Between 2003 and 2006 Ms O’Dwyer served as the European Correspondent at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs in Malta. 

Ms O’Dwyer holds a Bachelors Degree from the University of Malta as well as a Masters Degree in Contemporary European Studies from the University of Sussex, UK. Over the course of her career Ms O’Dwyer has also taken part in numerous CFSP oriented training programmes and exchanges. 

Ms O’Dwyer is married to Mr Enda O’Dwyer, and they have a daughter and a son.