(from left to right) Ms. Paula Figueras, Mr. Andrui Bonifacio, Ms. Queenie Guzman, Ms. Patricia Ortega, Ms. Gigi Perett, Ms. Jessica Martinez, President Marcelo Rebelo de Sousa of the Portuguese Republic, Philippine Ambassador to Portugal Celia Anna Feria, Philippine Embassy’s Third Secretary and Vice-Consul Maria Flordeliza Tuiza and Cultural Attaché Michelle Reyes and Ms. Ma. Carmen Serirtan.
18 November 2019, LISBON – The Philippine Embassy in Lisbon, along with 40 other Lisbon based embassies and other international organizations participated in the 35th edition of the 2019 Diplomatic Bazaar organized by the Association of Families of Portuguese Diplomats in Lisbon from 15 to 16 November 2019 at the Lisbon Congress Center.
The Philippine Embassy’s participation in the Diplomatic Bazaar is part of its efforts to promote Philippine cultural and economic diplomacy in Portugal by showcasing the best of Philippine made products.
In this year’s Diplomatic Bazaar, the Philippine Embassy aimed to give the Portuguese public an inclusive cultural experience by providing its booth with a large eye-catching colorful backdrop of the annual Sinulog Festival in Cebu, one of the most popular festivals in the Philippines to complement the Philippine products displayed as an venue to celebrate the rich and vibrant cultural heritage and traditions of the various regions in the Philippines. For the 2nd year in a row, the Philippine Embassy’s festive themed stand stood out as the best booth as expressed by the Portuguese public at the Diplomatic Bazaar.
The Philippine Embassy’s “destination tourism branding” of its colorful booth also attracted the attention of many passersby who made positive comments about the beauty of the Philippines which ranged from their fond recollections of their travel to the Philippines to important life events that occurred while visiting the country.
The diversity and variety of Philippine products displayed at the 2019 Diplomatic Bazaar at the Lisbon Congress Center.
The Philippine Embassy invited Lisbon-based Filipina entrepreneurs, Ms. Paula Figueras and Ms. Queenie Guzman, co-owners of GustoKo who provided colorful native bags, high-end fashion accessories and home décor made from natural indigenous materials from the provinces of Laguna and Palawan. Both Ms. Figueras and Ms. Guzman have supported and contributed greatly to the Embassy’s various cultural and economic diplomacy activities as “cultural entrepreneurs," where they have not only created economic value to Philippine made products, but also have committed themselves to preserve and promote Philippine culture and heritage in Portugal.
“It is a great honor to participate in this solidarity event, we are not only helping a charitable cause, but we are also helping supporting the Filipina weavers of these products. It is indeed an honor for the Embassy to bring these things to the Bazaar as it promotes intercultural exchange between the Philippines and Portugal” said Ambassador Feria during her live interview on a morning show by RTP1, a Portuguese national television station.
During the interview, Ambassador Feria showed a banig basket made by Filipina weavers which showed the creativity of the Filipino tradition. She further explained that the advocacy of preserving, developing and modernizing the use of indigenous fabrics not only helps the rural economy in the Philippines but also empowers women.
Passersby look at the variety of Philippine products available during the Diplomatic Bazaar at the Lisbon Congress Center.
The highlight of the Diplomatic Bazaar was the presence of President Marcelo Rebelo de Sousa of the Portuguese Republic who opened the Bazaar and had the opportunity to drop by the Philippine booth. Ambassador Feria gifted the Portuguese President with a banig bag filled with dried mangoes and pineapples, and various handicrafts. President Marcelo Rebelo de Sousa received the gifts with admiration on the remarkable craftsmanship and ingenuity of the Filipino people.
Portuguese President Marcelo Rebelo de Sousa (left) receives from Philippine Ambassador to Portugal Celia Anna M. Feria a banig bag filled with Philippine food products and handicrafts at the Philippine booth of the Diplomatic Bazaar at the Lisbon Congress Center.
The annual Diplomatic Bazaar is a charity event organized every year by the Association of Families of the Portuguese Diplomats with the participation of the embassies accredited in Lisbon. The embassies have year after year recognized the event as an opportunity to support the much-valued social causes and to showcase the products and traditions of their respective countries.
Philippine Ambassador to Portugal Celia Anna M. Feria explains the rich weaving tradition of the Philippines during a live television interview by RTP1, a Portuguese television station.
Ms. Queenie Guzman of GustoKo (center) welcomes passersby to the Philippine booth with a smile at the 2019 Diplomatic Bazaar at the Lisbon Congress Center.