The Philippine Ambassador to Singapore Antonio A. Morales and his wife Mdm. Shirlene C. Mananquil hosted a diplomatic reception at the St. Regis Singapore on 19 June 2017 to mark the 119th anniversary of the proclamation of Philippine independence.
The reception was graced by more than 400 guests including Singapore officials, Heads of Diplomatic/Consular Mission, members of the diplomatic corps, leaders and representatives of the business community, think-tanks and the academe and the professional Filipino community in Singapore.
Singapore Minister for Trade and Industry (Trade) Lim Hng Kiang, the official representative of the Singapore government, was guest-of-honour. He was joined by Members of Parliament (MPs) Dr. Lee Bee Wah of Nee Soon GRC and Mr. Tan Wu Meng of Jurong GRC.
Ambassador Morales thanked Minister Lim Hng Kiang, the MPs and all the other guests for attending the diplomatic reception. He cited the robust ties between PHL and Singapore particularly in the economic and political spheres, which recently saw growth in bilateral trade, investments and tourism as well as high-level exchanges between officials of both countries.
Ambassador Morales noted that the well-being of Filipinos whose presence in Singapore is mutually-beneficial to the two (2) countries remains one of the priorities of the Philippines. The Embassy will continue to working with Singapore authorities to help ensure that Filipinos in Singapore will continue to positively contribute to PHL and Singaporean societies.
He concluded by thanking Singapore for its support to PHL during its ASEAN chairmanship and for being PHL’s true friend. He added that there are limitless opportunities for further cooperation for the two (2) countries at various levels of engagement.
Minister Lim, for his part, mirrored the statement of Ambassador Morales regarding the continued growth of bilateral ties between PHL and Singapore and the important role that both countries play in ASEAN. He also recognized the important contributions of Filipinos in Singapore the services, transport, medical, commercial and IT sectors. He said that Filipinos are equally known for being talented in art as he noted the masterpieces of Filipino artists, which are on display in big art galleries in the city-state including the National Gallery of Singapore.
Minister Lim said that Singapore will continue to work with PHL in the ASEAN community-building process.
The diplomatic reception again featured the officers and staff of the Philippine Embassy in their elegant Filipiniana outfit. It also showcased Philippine favourites including the mouth-watering kilawin na tuna, pandan rice, adobong manok and the ubiquitous lechon, which was displayed separately in deference to Muslim guests.
Filipino guitarist-soloist Arthur Galero played background music as a promotional video of the Department of Tourism on PHL tourism was played after the official program and lasting for the rest of the reception.