The Finnish Embassy’s celebration of independence on Dec 6 was more subdued, because its Philippine embassy was closing on the same day.
Ambassador Heikki Hannikainen noted that they had at least been able to celebrate the event in the country since their arrival in 2008. “However, we are certainly not leaving the Philippines all together…we shall maintain an organic presence in the Royal Norwegian Embassy in Manila. We may no longer have our own embassy here as of next year, but the Finnish Embassy will remain operative here.”
He proudly stated that he had been witness to many good changes in the country, saying that the Philippines had “rapidly regained the respectability that it rightfully deserves.” Economic indications were good, he said, and added that better investment ratings were just around the corner.
“Your Bangko Sentral is by far the most respected bank in the region; the judiciary system is being revamped…all which makes the Philippines attractive to foreign investors, especially Finnish ones.”
Calling for a toast, Ambassador Hannikainen promised that they would return, adding, “If anyone will ask me, yes, the Philippines is worth the effort.”