Richard Ralph

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Richard Peter Ralph CMG CVO (born 27 April 1946) is a British former diplomat who was ambassador to Peru and then chairman of a mining company that operates in Peru.

Diplomatic career[edit]

Ralph was educated at The King's School, Canterbury, and Edinburgh University. He joined the Foreign and Commonwealth Office (FCO) in 1969 and served at Vientiane, Lisbon, Harare and Washington, D.C., as well as at the FCO. He was ambassador to Latvia 1993–95, governor of the Falkland Islands (and commissioner for South Georgia and the South Sandwich Islands) 1996–99, ambassador to Romania and concurrently to Moldova 1999–2002, and ambassador to Peru 2003–06.

While Ralph was ambassador to Romania, the government sold its national steel firm, Sidex, to a company owned by Lakshmi Mittal, a major donor to the British Labour party which was then in power under Tony Blair as prime minister. Ralph was said to have a mistress who was employed by a legal firm which worked on the steel deal,[1] and he had previously worked alongside Jonathan Powell, who later became Blair's chief of staff, at the British Embassy in Washington. However, Ralph was defended by the foreign secretary, Jack Straw.[2]

Monterrico Metals[edit]

Ralph left the diplomatic service in 2006 and became executive chairman of Monterrico Metals plc, a publicly listed company with a copper mine at Rio Blacos in Peru.[3] In 2008 he was fined for insider trading associated with Monterrico Metals.[4]


  • RALPH, Richard Peter, Who's Who 2014, A & C Black, 2014; online edn, Oxford University Press, 2014
  1. ^ Our man with the lover half his age, The Telegraph, 16 February 2002
  2. ^ Straw backs ambassador over steel deal, The Guardian, London, 22 February 2002
  3. ^ Former British Ambassador to Peru Appointed as Executive Chairman at the Wayback Machine (archived 6 October 2006), Monterrico Metals plc, 14 August 2006
  4. ^ Former British ambassador fined £118,000 for insider trading, The Guardian, London, 13 November 2008

Diplomatic posts
Preceded by
Richard Samuel
Ambassador to Latvia
Succeeded by
Nicholas Jarrold
Government offices
Preceded by
David Tatham
Governor of the Falkland Islands
Succeeded by
Donald Lamont
Diplomatic posts
Preceded by
Christopher Crabbie
Ambassador to Romania and Moldova
Succeeded by
Quinton Quayle
Preceded by
Roger Hart
Ambassador to Peru
Succeeded by
Catherine Nettleton