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Amb. Bataclan welcomes Scholars
Thursday, 17 November 2011 10:19    Bookmark and Share PDF Print E-mail

Philippine Ambassador to Belgium Victoria S. Bataclan (4th from left) and Consul General Marichu B. Mauro (extreme right) welcomed the three Filipino scholars of the Université catholique de Louvain (UCL), who paid their Courtesy Call on the Ambassador on 09 November 2011 at the Philippine Embassy in Brussels.

The three (3) students, namely: Ms. Monica Paragas, Ms. Myla Santiago, and Ms. Jeanie Uy are public health students of the University of the Philippines - Manila who will be receiving academic credits for their study in UCL under the MAHEVA program (Man, Health, Biodiversity in Asia) of the European Union's Erasmus Mundus Action II.  They are the first Filipino recipients of these EU scholarships.

UCL's MAHEVA Coordinator Mme. Claire de Burbure de Wesembeek (3rd from left) also joined the Courtesy Call.

OAV Akyat Barko 2011
Thursday, 17 November 2011 10:10    Bookmark and Share PDF Print E-mail

11 November 2011, Brussels - As part of its efforts to increase the number of overseas absentee voters to the May 2013 National Elections, the Philippine Embassy in Brussels conducted its the 1st "Akyat Barko" field registration this year on 11 November 2011 at the Port of Antwerp, Belgium.

The team, headed by Second Secretary and Consul Christina Rola (5th from left), was able to register 20 seafarers of the all-Filipino crew of Japanese cargo ship M/V Santa Isabella that was docked in Antwerp due to the Europe-wide holiday, the Armistice day.

The Port of Antwerp, a multifunctional port where all types of freight are loaded, unloaded, stored and handled, is the second largest port in Europe for international shipping freight and the tenth largest in the world.

The Philippine Embassy is set to hold field registrations in Luxembourg and in other places in Belgium to increase the participation of Filipinos there in the May 2013 National Elections.

All Filipino nationals who are at least 18 years old can register as overseas absentee voters. They need only to present their valid Philippine passport to be registered. For complete information, you may check the Embassy's website at

BAE Mindanao in Brussels
Friday, 04 November 2011 14:40    Bookmark and Share PDF Print E-mail

27 October 2011 -- Philippine Ambassador to Belgium Her Excellency Victoria Bataclan, accompanied by the entire Philippine Embassy complement, attended the opening of the Filipino visual arts exhibition entitled, "Bae Mindanao: Works of Women About Women of Mindanao" held today at the Brenart Gallery in Brussels.

In her remarks at this special event, the Ambassador congratulated Ms. Guia Mabel Acosta, curator and exhibit organizer, for the initiative of bringing the Philippines - specifically Mindanao - to Europe for the second year in a row.

Ambassador Bataclan highlighted that this year's exhibit was "a celebration of three things that Filipinos hold dear: Philippine arts, the empowerment of women and the untapped beauty that is Mindanao". She added that, "the universality of womanhood as a subject - as seen through a Filipina's eyes - will certainly captivate the interest of our European friends and will allow them to have a deeper appreciation of how much we have in common despite differences in our cultures".Brenart_2

Ms. Acosta, who was unable to participate at the event, had her message read by   Mr. Robert Malengreau, Director of the Brussels International Independent Film Festival, and a friend of the Philippines who regularly promotes Philippine films in Belgium for more than three decades.

This exhibition, running from 28 October to 12 November 2011, was jointly organized by Ms. Acosta and Mr. Jack Mener, the administrator of the Brenart Gallery. It can be recalled that both of them staged the Brussels exhibit of  "Tanaw Mindanaw" held in September 2010 in cooperation with the Philippine Embassy in Brussels.END.




SSS OFW Caravan in Belgium
Friday, 04 November 2011 14:31    Bookmark and Share PDF Print E-mail

Brussels, 21 October 2011 - Philippine Ambassador to the Kingdom of Belgium, Grand Duchy of Luxembourg and Head of the Philippine Mission to the European Union H.E. Victoria S. Bataclan led the officials from the Philippine Social Security System (SSS) in meeting with the concerned Belgian officials to discuss the implementation of the Philippines-Belgium Social Security Agreement signed in 2001 and took effect in 2005. The Ambassador was joined by SSS President Emilio De Quiros, Jr. and Senior Vice President Judy Frances See who called on the Belgian officials to pursue the objectives of the Agreement and invited them to visit Manila to explore other areas of cooperation.

Following the meeting, Ambassador Bataclan requested the SSS officials to brief the Filipino community in Brussels on the implementation of the bilateral agreement and how they would benefit from it. Mr. De Quiros gave a presentation on the Agreement and explained its provisions especially those affecting the Filipino migrants in Belgium. A "question and answer" portion clarified the various concerns raised by the Filipino community.

On 22 October, a briefing was also conducted in Antwerp. The Philippine Honorary Consul in Antwerp, Mr. Antonio Guansing gathered the community leaders at the Stella Maris Center not only to hear the briefing of the SSS officials but also to meet the newly-arrived arrived Philippine Ambassador.SSS_2

In her remarks, Ambassador Bataclan expressed her appreciation for the Filipinos who arrived at the Center despite the cold weather.  She conveyed her desire to work closely with them and gave assurance that she will be available and the Embassy in general in case they need help, advice or to discuss projects for the Filipino community and the Philippines.  She reiterated again her earlier request made when she met for the first time all the FilCom leaders in Belgium last 14 October in the Embassy.

The FilCom leaders lauded Ambassador Bataclan for bringing the SSS officials in Belgium and appreciated the information on Filipino benefits from the bilateral agreement.  Ambassador Bataclan also met about 20 Filipino seafarers who greeted her with enthusiasm.  She assured them that the Embassy is ready to extend its full support to them should they need its assistance especially on matters concerning the protection of their well-being.

SSS_3The visit to Belgium of the SSS officials was part of the SSS OFW Caravan 2011 which covered practicaly all the key cities in the Middle East and Europe with big concentrtaion of Filipino workers.  The SSS coverage of Filipino migrants is part of the Philippine government's package of protection for the more than nine million Filipino nationals working and living overseas. - END


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