MUNICH 22 February 2019 – Foreign Affairs Secretary Teodoro L. Locsin Jr. received a rousing reception from members of the Filipino-German Community in Munich during a town hall meeting at the Maritim Hotel on 17 February 2019.
Organized by the newly-opened Philippine Consulate General in Frankfurt, which counts Bavaria among the German states under its consular jurisdiction, the event was attended by some 120 Filipinos and Filipino-Germans who now call Germany their second home.
Secretary Locsin took time from his participation in the Munich Security Conference to engage with the Filipino Community in a town hall setting.
“We are happy that the Secretary met with us during his stay here, as no other high-level public official had done so in the recent past,” said Velvet Tkocz, a former Filipina who has been in the country for over 40 years.
The Secretary underscored the Duterte Administration’s efforts to make government services more accessible to the public.
“The past administration closed embassies and consulates. We believe in opening them,” Secretary Locsin said. He also pledged to continue reducing documentary requirements and simplifying procedures in availing of consular services.
Moreover, he cited the recent entry into force of the Philippines-Germany Social Security Agreement and the Triple Win Project among programs concluded in pursuit of the welfare of overseas Filipinos.
Secretary Locsin also entertained questions from the audience, whose queries ranged from the acquisition of Senior Citizens’ identification cards to the full automation of the passport renewal application process.
Among the other guests in attendance were Honorary Consul Stefan Detig and former Honorary Vice Consul Jutta Hippelein, who served in the capacity for over four decades. Leaders of Filipino-German organizations throughout Bavaria also graced the occasion.
“We are happy to attend activities like this, as they serve to unify the community and enable us to meet and network with our fellow countrymen in the area,” said Aian Angeo, the Munich-based President of the Filipino Nurses Association in Germany.
In her introductory remarks, Consul General Evelyn Austria-Garcia apprised the audience of developments concerning the Consulate General’s establishment. The Consulate General was opened in the latter part of 2018, with consular services being rendered to the public beginning last January. END
FRANKFURT 06 December 2018 – The Philippines sustained its presence in the largest and most established book fair in the world with its participation in the 2018 Frankfurt Book Fair (FBF).
The National Book Development Board (NBDB), led by its Chairperson Flor Marie Sta. Romana-Cruz, spearheaded the country’s participation. Accompanying her were NBDB officials, Member of the Governing Board Maria Karina Bolasco, Executive Director Jerry Tizon, and Education Undersecretary Annalyn Sevilla.
“The Philippine booth showcases the best of book publishing in our country and presents to the world our rich literary culture,” incoming Consul General to Frankfurt Evelyn Austria-Garcia said.
“With her efforts in allocating the necessary budget for the Philippines’ effective participation, Senator Loren Legarda has again proven why she is known to be the country’s patroness of arts and culture,” incoming Consul General Austria-Garcia added.
Fifteen publishing companies from the Philippines took part in the 2018 FBF as co-exhibitors, with each showcasing their best books and holding meetings with prospective partners. Among activities by the Philippines held on different stages at the Fair were an opening reception, business matchmaking sessions, speaking engagements at the ASEAN Forum, and culinary presentations.
Through the support of Senator Legarda, who is also Chair of the Senate Committees on Finance, Foreign Relations, and Climate Change, the Philippines has taken part in the annual event the past four years. Senator Legarda again manifested her support of the Philippines’ book publishing industry through her attendance at the 2018 FBF.
According to the 2018 FBF organizers, over 285,000 visitors attended this year’s Fair. International attendance, both in terms of exhibitors and trade visitors, experienced an uptick in 2018 with 7,503 exhibitors from 109 countries.
The soon-to-open Consulate General in Frankfurt provided logistical support to the NBDB, the Office of Senator Legarda, and co-exhibitors from the Philippines. END