Delegates from Sabrosa, Portugal with Philippine Ambassador to Portugal Philippe J. Lhuillier after their recent visit to Sabrosa sister city Cebu. (from left to right, front row) Regional Business Association President Dr. Luis Tao; Sabrosa City Mayor Jose Manuel de Carvalho Marques, Ambassador PJ Lhuillier, Mesao Frio Mayor Prof. Alberto Perreira, Regional Wine and Tourism Association Representative Dr. Celeste Marques, (back row) Mayor’ Marques wife Dr. Carla Dinis, and Regional Local Development Association Representative Dr. Helene Lapa.
Delegates from Sabrosa City, Portugal, headed by its City Mayor José Manuel de Carvalho Marques, recently visited the Philippines for an official business trip.
The trip was under the auspices of Philippine Ambassador to Portugal Philippe J. Lhuillier.
Amb. Lhuillier said, "We are glad to have this opportunity to host the delegation headed by Mayor Marques. The trip has produced fruitful partnerships and has started the rediscovery of each other by the two countries."
The Portuguese delegation's first stop was Cebu City, which signed a Sister-City agreement with Sabrosa late last year to widen ties between the two metropolis. Both belong to the Network of Magellan Cities composed of places encountered by Magellan in his circumnavigation of the world. Sabrosa is Magellan's birthplace, while Cebu is where Magellan died in battle in 16th century.
While in Cebu, the Portuguese delegation met with local officials and the business community in the city, and had exploratory meetings with entities or institutions interested to pursue with the Sabrosa city government areas of cooperation in European Community funded projects.
The Cebu visit also laid the groundwork for the two cities’ pursuit of partnership in the areas of culture, trade, tourism and education.
The Cebu trip had in fact been an opportunity for the Portuguese guests to experience first-hand Philippine culture as they witnessed the recently concluded Sinulog festival.
Mayor Marques said, "We thank Ambassador Lhuillier and our host in Cebu Mayor Michael Rama for the opportunity to experience their culture and meet with local businessmen. We are going home to Portugal more knowledgeable of the Philippines, and the business opportunities that are present in this country."
The trip was also an important part of the preparations for the celebration of the 500th year of Magellan’s circumnavigation of the world in 2019 and 2022 – a celebration being spearheaded by Sabrosa.
Located north of Portugal, Sabrosa is host to a large number of commercial and industrial establishments and is in the heartland of Portugal’s famed Douro wine producing region.
Last year, Sabrosa named one of the main roads emanating from the Magellan monument at the western entry point to Sabrosa to Avenida Cidade de Cebu, in honor of the relationship of the two cities.