Asbjorn Overgaard Christiansen, Birgit Sarah Carlstedt and Annette Rosenqvist all started in key positions at the Royal Danish Embassy this August.
Photos Disraporn Yatprom
The Royal Danish Embassy in Bangkok has welcomed three new key staff this autumn.
Attache Annette Rosenqvist is the Embassy’s new Head of the Visa Section, replacing Eva Szeftel. Consul Birgit Sarah Carlstedt has taken over as Head of the Consular Section following Tove Wihlborg Andersen’s relocation to Denmark. And Commercial Counsellor Asbjorn Overgaard Christiansen is the new Head of the Commercial Section at the Embassy.
The major reshuffle in the Royal Danish Embassy also includes the departure of Mads Beyer, the political counsellor, who will be replaced later in the year.
The three new key staff all made their entry to the embassy August 1 and except from all being very enthusiastic about their new jobs they all share an interest in running and in general keeping in good physical shape.
Annette Rosenqvist has taken over the position as Head of Visa Section that employs 4 other persons. She is going to handle visa applications from people who wants to visit Denmark or stay in Denmark and she is focused on giving a good first impression of Denmark.
“I am willing to work hard to give the applicants the best service we can offer with the set of rules we have to follow according the Danish Ministry of Foreign Affairs,” says Annette Rosenqvist. She brings who brings lots of experience from other work related foreign stays around the world, to her new job at the Danish Embassy. Earlier she has been working in Mexico, Washington and Moscow.
Annette Rosenqvist’s husband decided to stay in Denmark, because he has a very good job at the Danish shipping company J. Lauritzen.
“He is sailing a lot, so we will find our ways to get together on different locations around the world,” she ensures with a smile.
While the couple’s 20-years old Simon is studying physics in Denmark, the 17-years old daughter is joining her mother in Bangkok taking her IB at NIST International school in Bangkok, where she already found new friends, tells Annette Rosenqvist, who is excited about her new life in Bangkok.
“I was surprised to see how many people there is everywhere, but I am looking forward to get started for real and get more into this geographical area,” she adds. Also in her earlier jobs her work has been related to the Visa section
Birgit Sarah Carlstedt is replacing Tove Wihlborg Andersen as new Head of the Consular Section. Her most important task will be to help Danish people or other people who have been given permanent residence in Denmark out of the problems they might have ended up in. As the Embassy also covers Cambodia and Myanmar the cases may also be Danes living or traveling in these countries.
Birgit Carlstedt expects loads of work in light of the fact that the embassy has the highest number of cases of all the embassies of the Ministry of Foreign affairs. She is highly experienced as she has previously been working with consular tasks in Zambia, Dusseldorf, Madrid, Bratislava and latest Kabul in Afghanistan.
“We are working with many different cases from people who end in jail to those who are in the unlucky situation where they have lost their passport or purse,” explains Birgit Sarah Carlstedt
“In order to help people financially the person needs to put up a guarantee in some way. It could be the family we ask to provide security, but we are always looking for a good solution for the citizen, also if it calls for at creative one,” she says.
Birgit Sarah Carlstedt has relocated to Bangkok bringing both her husband and their cat.
“It has been quite a task for the embassy’s people to get the permission to bring him,” she says, and adds after a short break. “I mean… the cat!”
Her husband Carsten is already engaged in to Danish a volunteer project in the Surin province. In addition to that he is going to be the coach for Thailand’s national youth handball team for both boys and girls.
“That is a huge task to undertake, and the goal is to qualify the teams to the Olympic Games in Rio de Janeiro 2016,” she adds.
Asbjørn Overgaard Christiansen declares already before we start talking about his new job as head of Commercial Section at the Danish Embassy, that he plans taking lessons in Thai language. The language ambition tells us that the new Commercial Counsellor is already deeply engaged with the challenges and options of his new job.
“The essence of our work is to help Danish companies being established in the market in Thailand, Cambodia and Myanmar. The main goal is of course to create growth in Denmark, but in effort to do that, we have to know the export countries and their cultures very well,” he tells.
“I have a very good and hard working team and we are prepared to take the next year’s challenges that in particular includes the new options that are emerging in Myanmar after the repeal of the sanctions that previously made it impossible for foreign companies to trade with the country,” he adds.
In his private life Asbjorn is married to Gitte who has been able to continue in her current job in the large facility service company ISS – working over the Internet from Bangkok. Together they have a three-year old daughter Anna who just started at the Kid’s Academy nursery in Bangkok.
Like his two new colleagues Asbjørn has previously been posted abroad. He has spent four years in Dubai before he stayed three years in Hongkong. His latest job was as Private Secretary to the Minister for Trade & Investment, which he tells, has given him a great insight in the political system, that might become useful in his job at the Danish Embassy.