The Ambassador of the European Union (EU) to the Philippines, His Excellency Luc Véron, delivered the 7th Installment of the UST Ambassadors Lecture Series (ALS). With the theme “Strengthening EU-PH relations”, the discussion was held at the Dr. George SK Ty Function Hall, on November 29, 2022.
In his welcome remarks, UST Secretary-General Rev. Fr. Louie R. Coronel, O.P., EHL, made mention of the participation of the University as an educational partner in the recently concluded European Higher Education Fair 2022. Fr. Coronel also underscored the previous collaborations of UST and EU—highlighting the importance of such partnerships in strengthening the internationalization thrusts of the University. This was followed by the talk of Ambassador Luc Veron.
Ambassador Véron began with a background of current relations between the EU and the Philippines, which is based on a bilateral Partnership and Cooperation Agreement, and then gave insights on key points, such as trade, good governance, maritime security, and human rights, among others.
A key highlight that he shared with the over 200 onsite student participants was on climate and the environment, where Ambassador Véron shared that as the EU commits to further cut emissions by 55% by 2030 and to become climate neutral by 2050, they will also support the Philippines and other countries in their own efforts to mitigate and to adapt to climate change.
“Climate and the environment have been one of the priorities in the EU cooperation programs with the Philippines for some time and will continue to be so in the coming years. We have been supporting the development of renewable sources of energy, the protection of biodiversity and waste management through several projects which have also aimed at providing livelihoods to poor communities. The top priority for our development cooperation with the Philippines until 2027 will be the transition to a Green Circular Economy and the support to sustainable sources of energy,” said the EU Ambassador.
UST Graduate School Dean Prof. Michael Anthony C. Vasco, Ph.D., UST College of Science Dean Prof. Rey Donne S. Papa, Ph.D., and UST College of Architecture academic staff Ar. Noel Cruz served as panel reactors.
Two-time winner of the Luciano Pavarotti Choir of the World trophy, the UST Singers, performed six songs during the event.
Diplomats who have previously served as speakers for the UST ALS include, the former Ambassador of the Republic of Korea to the Philippines Han Dong-man (2018), former Deputy Chief of Mission of the Royal Thai Embassy in Manila Ms. Urawadee Sriphiromya (2017), and former Ambassador of the United States to the Philippines Philip Goldberg (2016), among others.
As UST Office of Public Affairs Director Asst. Prof. Joreen T. Rocamora, Ph.D., explained, “The Ambassadors Lecture Series is a forum for intellectual engagement between the embassies and the Thomasian academic community. It paves the way not only for linkages, but also for new learning opportunities.”