When he was The Prince of Wales, His Majesty visited many countries at the request of the UK Government, and continues to do so as King.
The Diplomatic Reception, which takes place annually, sees The King and Queen and other members of the Royal Family welcome over 500 members of the Diplomatic Corps in the State Rooms at Buckingham Palace.
His Majesty also regularly welcomes Ambassadors and High Commissioners based in London for Audiences, which are one-to-one meetings with The King.
There are more than 170 Ambassadors and High Commissioners based in London at any given time and each one of them will have an Audience with The King shortly after taking up his or her role.
The King and the Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office
The King is in regular contact with officials at the Foreign, Commonwealth & Development Office (FCDO), which looks after British interests overseas and builds diplomatic ties with other countries.
The FCDO advises on which foreign Heads of State should be invited to the UK on State Visits. The King and the Royal Family are responsible for hosting the Head of State and his or her party with a ceremonial arrival and a State Banquet to welcome them.
Members of the Royal Family in support of The King
Members of the Royal Family support The King’s role as Head of State and regularly undertake overseas visits at the request of the Foreign and Commonwealth Office, on behalf of The King. These visits tend to celebrate the ties and shared interests between the UK and other nations.
Members of the Royal Family occasionally take on a special role for which overseas visits can bring much needed awareness to a particular issue. The Duchess of Edinburgh works with survivors of conflict-related sexual violence, alongside the Foreign and Commonwealth Office, as part of her work on the Preventing Sexual Violence in Conflict Initiative.
During State Visits and key diplomatic events such as Commonwealth Heads of Government Meetings and significant anniversaries, the entire working Royal Family comes together to warmly welcome visiting Heads of State.