Grand celebration marks 60 years of Phl-German relations

Ossowski emphasizes that relations between the Philippines and Germany can be traced back to the time of national hero Dr. Jose Rizal.

GERMAN Ambassador to the Philippines Thomas Ossowski hosted a reception to celebrate 60 years of diplomatic relations between Germany and the Philippines at the Sofitel Philippine Plaza Manila on October 3.

About 600 distinguished guests from the fields of politics, business and culture attended the reception, including former German Minister for Economics and Technology Michael Glos, who came all the way from Germany to convey greetings of the German people during the festive occasion.

Foreign Secretary Albert F. del Rosario, accompanied by his wife Gretchen and members of his family, was the guest of honor.

Island lounges representing the partners of the event were set up in the ballroom and highlighted the dense network of German institutions and German-Philippine companies operating in the Philippines.

The award-winning choral group Philippine Madrigal Singers sang the national anthems, followed by a performance choreographed by Douglas Nierras of Powerdance.

While the guests enjoyed German and Philippine culinary specialties, the internationally applauded techno-violinist Princess Ybañez performed a fusion of electro-rock and pop.

Aicelle Santos of Pinoy Pop Superstar 2006 and jazz-pop pianist Ryan Villamor completed the program and ensured the festive atmosphere throughout the evening.

Germany and the Philippines have strong economic relations. As Europe’s biggest economy, Germany is the Philippines’s No. 1 trading partner in Europe, with a trade volume of over €4 billion per year.

Germany’s imports from the Philippines even exceeded its exports.

Over 200 German companies are currently operating in the Philippines and Germany belongs to the top sources of foreign direct investment from Europe.

Germany is also one of the most important donors of official development assistance for the Philippines.

“Our globalized world brings Germany and the Philippines even closer together, and we will continue to work toward fostering our partnership in the political, economic, development and cultural field,” Ossowski said.

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