by Emily Manuel
(Eagle News) — The Embassy of Denmark hosted a celebration of its 170th Constitution Day at the Enderun Colleges, Taguig City last June 5, 2019.
Denmark’s Constitution Day commemorates the signing of the Danish constitution of 1849 by Frederik VII, which established Denmark as a constitutional monarchy.
Danish Ambassador Jan Top Christensen welcomed government officials and members of the diplomatic corps. In his speech, he highlighted the embassy’s accomplishments in the past five years, which includes the re-establishment of the Danish embassy in Manila in January 2015 and the opening of the first Philippine embassy in Copenhagen in January 2019.
Ambassador Christensen reported that trade between Denmark and the Philippines increased by 115%. He says that many Danish companies have recently set up office here from food, retail, shipping, infrastructure, and information technology. The embassy also noted the increase in tourists from the Philippines to Denmark, with almost 8,000 visas being issued last year.
“Through close, very close cooperation with Philippine authorities, we are able to facilitate more Danish businesses in the Philippines thereby helping to create more jobs in Denmark and in the Philippines,” the ambassador said.
As part of the cultural exchange, he mentioned several film festivals and the recent publication of Jose Rizal’s translation of Hans Christian Andersen’s fairy tales.
He noted the Philippine government’s initiatives, including the passage of the Freedom of Information Act which will bring about transparency in the fight against corruption, the passage of the Reproductive Health Act, free university tuition, universal health care, and the “build, build, build” initiative as being key to fighting poverty.
Department of Foreign Affairs (DFA) Assistant Secretary Amelita Aquino acknowledged Ambassador Christensen’s efforts in reopening the Danish embassy in the Philippines and thanked him for his “untiring efforts in strengthening Philippines-Denmark relations.”
“With both our countries having a physical presence in each other’s capitals, the ties that bind our two countries will be strengthened even more,” she says.