MANILA, May 19 (PIA) – To celebrate the Philippines-Australia Day, the Australian Embassy and the Australia Global Alumni in the Philippines will hold an outdoor festival on Saturday, May 20 at the Bonifacio High Street Ampitheater.
“This is a celebration of the longstanding and close friendship between our two countries. I invite everyone to join us in celebrating this inaugural friendship day,”
said Australian Ambassador Amanda Gorely.
The ambassador noted that Australia and the Philippines have strong people-to-people links nurtured through educational and cultural exchanges.
Inspired by Australia’s lively outdoor lifestyle, the festival will feature a free film screening and concert, a food and fashion fair, kid’s games and a traditional Aussie sausage sizzle hosted by alumni and volunteers.
The award-winning Australian family film “Paper Planes” will screen in the afternoon, followed by a fun paper plane making competition. To cap off the festival, Australian sax duo Half Sound with Erick Calilan and Tusa Montes, Indie Alternative band Oh! Flamingo and Filipino rock icons Razorback will perform.
Festivalgoer’s will also enjoy a free shuttle service around Bonifacio High Street on Star 8 solar jeepneys. These green public utility vehicles feature innovative Australian technology that modernises the classic Filipino jeep.
“I thank our Filipino friends and my fellow Australians for their warm support of last year’s celebration of 70 years of diplomatic relations,” Ambassador Gorely said.
“One of the outcomes of that was a Presidential Proclamation declaring 22 May of each year as Philippines–Australia Friendship Day so we can celebrate what’s great between our two countries,” she added.
The Philippines is one of Australia’s longest-standing bilateral relationships. While formal relations commenced with the opening of Australia’s first Consulate-General in Manila on May 22, 1946, links between the two countries date back to the 1800s, driven by trade and migration.
Lasting ties were forged in the heat of battle when 4,000 Australian service personnel fought alongside Filipino and allied forces for the liberation of the Philippines in WWII.
Today, Australia and the Philippines cooperate closely across a range of areas, including defence, counter-terrorism, law enforcement, education and development. Australia is the second largest source of Official Development Assistance (ODA) to the Philippines, with AUD 83 million (Php 2.8 million) in 2016-17 strategically deployed to support the Philippine roadmap for sustainable growth.
For more information about the first Philippines–Australia Friendship Day celebration, visit www.philippines.embassy.gov.au, like Australia in the Philippines on Facebook and follow @AusAmbPH on Twitter. (AUSTRALIAN EMBASSY/PIA-NCR/JEG)