Foreign Affairs Minister Murray McCully will travel to Addis Ababa, Ethiopia, next week to attend the African Union Executive Council.
"A quarter of the world's states are members of the African Union, and Africa is of increasing interest and importance to New Zealand," McCully says.
"This visit provides an opportunity for New Zealand to engage on a range of important regional issues."
McCully will also visit the United Arab Emirates to meet his counterpart, Foreign Minister Sheikh Abdullah, and sign a partnership arrangement with the Abu Dhabi Environment Agency.
"New Zealand and the UAE have an increasingly close relationship. I am pleased to be signing an agreement that will see New Zealand share some of its world-leading environmental and conservation management expertise," McCully says.