The Archbishop of New Zealand is to become the Anglican Communion's chief representative to the Roman Catholic Church.
Archbishop David Moxon will make the move to Rome after stepping down as Archbishop of New Zealand and Bishop of Waikato in April.
He will act as the Archbishop of Canterbury's representative at the Holy See and as the Director of the Anglican Centre in Rome, which works to foster unity between the Catholic and Anglican Churches.
Archbishop Moxon is expected to take up his new roles by next May.
The outgoing Archbishop of Canterbury, Dr Rowan Williams, said he was delighted with the appointment.
"There can be few people in the Communion so well qualified for this work," he said.
"Archbishop David has done distinguished service to the Anglican – Roman Catholic dialogue both locally and globally, and brings to this post both a wealth of experience and a range of profound friendships across the confessional frontiers."
Speaking about his new appointment, Archbishop Moxon said: "Our two churches are on the verge of new opportunities for joint mission, especially in the aid and development area.
"I'm also convinced there are new opportunities to learn from each other, and to support each other in the sacred cause for which Jesus gave his life and blood."