Press Release - SP Zubiri leads parliamentary mission to Spanish Senate
"Let us build on five hundred years of friendship and history."
This was the message of Senate President Juan Miguel "Migz" Zubiri to Spanish Senate President Pedro Rollán during the Philippine Senate's official parliamentary visit to the Senate of Spain on Monday, where enhanced trade relations was one of the key points of discussion.
Zubiri led a delegation of Philippine senators on a visit to their counterparts in Spain, with the objective of strengthening interparliamentary relations and expanding trade between the two countries. This visit comes as the Philippines and Spain celebrate 75 years of diplomatic relations.
"The foundations of our friendship are anchored on our shared history, our shared culture and our shared Catholic faith," said Zubiri. "Though we are proud to be our own independent Republic, we are also grateful for our heritage and our Hispanidad."
While Zubiri expressed gratitude for the extension of the Generalized Scheme of Preferences under the European Union (EU), of which Spain holds the presidency, he asked for Spanish aid in developing a free trade agreement (FTA) between the Philippines and the EU.
Rollán said that Spain's doors are always open to the Philippines, adding that he sees the delegation's visit as a welcome opportunity to reinforce the already excellent relations between the Philippines and Spain.
The Spanish leader also stressed the need for the governments of the two countries to work together for continued efforts to rise from the ill effects of the pandemic.
Spain, said Rollán, is especially well positioned to offer support in this post-pandemic period, being the head of the EU.
Joining Zubiri in the delegation were Senate Majority Leader Joel Villanueva and Sens. Sonny Angara, Pia Cayetano, Nancy Binay, Grace Poe, JV Ejercito and Mark Villar. The meeting was also attended by Philippine Ambassador to Spain Philippe Lhuillier and Spanish Ambassador to the Philippines Miguel Utray.