State Secretary Sumuvuori's visit to the Philippines covers topics from bilateral cooperation to regional matters

State Secretary Johanna Sumuvuori visited the Philippines on 23–26 January. Sumuvuori attended the reopening of the Finnish Embassy in Manila and met Secretary for Foreign Affairs of the Philippines Enrique Manalo. She also led the political consultations between Finland and the Philippines together with Undersecretary for Bilateral Relations and ASEAN Affairs Ma. Theresa P. Lazaro at the Department of Foreign Affairs of the Philippines.

State Secretary Johanna Sumuvuori met the Philippines’ Secretary for Foreign Affairs Enrique Manalo in Manila on 24 January. Image: Department of Foreign Affairs of the Republic of the Philippines

The political consultations dealt extensively with cooperation between the two countries and topical issues, such as migration, human rights, EU relations and cooperation with the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN), foreign and security policy, and trade relations between the two countries.

Sumuvuori met with the management of the Asian Development Bank, which has its headquarters in Manila, and local human rights defenders.  She also gave a speech at the Philippines Foreign Service Institute, discussing the Indo-Pasific and the challenges of Finland’s foreign and security policy.

Finland and the Philippines established diplomatic relations in 1955.  The countries have good bilateral relations, and the reopening of the Finnish Embassy should further strengthen them. The Philippines have announced that they will reopen their embassy in Helsinki by 2024.