HOUSE GOES SOUTH TO STRENGTHEN TIES WITH AUSTRALIA
A Philippine House of Representatives delegation led by Speaker Prospero C. Nograles visited Canberra and Sydney from 21 to 25 June as part of the regular two-way exchanges between the Australian Parliament and the Philippine Congress.
Philippine solons visited Parliament House in Canberra where they held discussions with the Speaker of the House of Representatives, Mr Harry Jenkins MP, and the President of the Senate, Senator the Hon John Hogg, on the positive state of bilateral relations and ways to strengthen inter-parliamentary relations between Manila and Canberra.
A WARM RECEPTION: (L to R) Philippine House of Representatives Secretary-General Marilyn Yap, Congressman Eduardo Zialcita, Deputy Speaker Arnulfo Fuentebella, Deputy Speaker Raul Del Mar, Senator the Hon John Hogg (Australia’s Senate President), Speaker Prospero Nograles, Mr Harry Jenkins MP (Australia’s House Speaker), Congresswoman Liwayway Vinzons-Chato, Congressman Jeci Lapus, Philippine Ambassador to Australia H.E. Ernesto De Leon and Congressman Mark Mendoza at Parliament House, Canberra. Photo courtesy of Auspic.
Delegates watched Question Time in the House of Representatives Chamber – where Ministers respond to questions about Government policies for the public record – and received a warm welcome from their Australian counterparts.
While in Canberra, the delegation also met the Australia-Philippines Parliamentary Group, the Minerals Council of Australia and senior officials from AusAID, the Department of Defence, and the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade.
In Sydney, delegates called on the Presiding Officers of the State Parliament of New South Wales, met with representatives of the Australia-Philippines Business Council, and were briefed on Australia’s sustainable fishing industries at the Cronulla Fisheries Research Centre of Excellence.
The Philippines and Australia enjoy strong people-to-people links with more than 200,000 Filipinos choosing to call Australia home. Many of them live in and around Sydney.
Australia’s Ministers for Foreign Affairs (the Hon Stephen Smith MP), Trade (the Hon Simon Crean MP) and Infrastructure (the Hon Anthony Albanese MP) have all visited Manila in the past 12 months, underlining the strength of the bilateral relationship.
An Australian parliamentary delegation also visited the Philippines in April this year.