I, together with my beloved wife Alice, as well as the officers and staff of the Philippine Embassy and its attached agencies, greet all our countrymen here in Singapore a Merry Christmas and a truly Prosperous New Year 2023!
The year that is about to pass has been a very eventful year for the Philippine Embassy in Singapore in its continuing efforts to promote Philippine interests and serve our countrymen on this side of the globe. Twenty-twenty two (2022) was marked by high-level visits and exchanges between our two countries, as well as by collaborative undertakings that brought our political, security, economic and socio-cultural relations with Singapore to even greater heights. It also saw the holding of overseas elections wherein 62.33 % of eligible Filipino voters in Singapore turned out to cast their votes – the highest in the history of overseas voting since it began in Singapore in 2004, and one of the highest in the Asia-Pacific Region for 2022. The year’s highlight was, of course, the State Visit of President Ferdinand R. Marcos, Jr. last September, which further strengthened our bilateral ties with Singapore and resulted in the signing of six Memoranda of Understanding (MOUs) on digital cooperation, personal data protection, among others. During his visit, a total of USD 6.54 billion worth of foreign direct investment commitments were garnered, which could generate new jobs for an estimated 15,000 Filipino workers in the areas of transportation, renewable energy, information technology and other fields.
The coming New Year promises to be no less eventful. Among other things, the construction of a new Philippine Embassy building shall go full swing by the start of the New Year. It is a two-year project, the ultimate aim of which is to provide our 200,000-strong Filipino community in Singapore a more spacious, more client-friendly, more beautiful embassy building that shall represent the best of Philippine culture here in Singapore. Meantime, our Embassy shall be housed in a new (temporary) location at TripleOne Somerset Building (Level 16), 111 Somerset Road, where we shall continue to find ever better ways of serving our country and our countrymen here in Singapore.
We join all our kababayans in thanking Almighty God for the blessings He showered upon us, as individual citizens and as a nation, this year; and in praying that the coming New Year will bring with it the answers to our hope and prayers for a more harmonious and more peaceful world.
Dr. EMMANUEL R. FERNANDEZ Charge d’Affaires, a.i. and Consul General 25 December 2022