MANILA, Philippines ? The country has opened the first resident Philippine embassy in Dublin, Ireland, the Department of Foreign Affairs announced on Wednesday.
Philippine Ambassador to Ireland Ariel Abadilla said in his report to the home office that the embassy has been holding temporary office since July 9 at the Fitzwilliam Business Centre, Suite G03, 77 Sir John Rogerson?s Quay.
Its business hours are from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m., Mondays to Fridays, except on Philippine and Irish holidays.
The initial diplomatic team is composed of Abadilla, Minister and Consul General Hjayceelyn Quintana, and attaches Jocelyn Roxas, Ruth Patricio, and Errol Reyes.
As part of the transition process, Philippine Honorary Consul in Dublin John Ferris had his last consular clinic on July 11 at the Teacher?s Club on Parnell Square West, Dublin. Ferris has been helping the transition process at the new office.
Abadilla said the embassy opened its consular and frontline services on July 13 to the public.
Abadilla said the team has been simultaneously setting up a permanent location for the embassy, which was expected to be ready in two to three months? time, while attending to all aspects of Philippine-Irish diplomatic relations.
A press statement from the Department of Foreign Affairs said Charla Aldemita, from Misamis Occidental and now a resident of County Kildare, was the first to visit the embassy on its opening day. She came with her husband Arnold and their two young sons.
According to Abadilla, Aldemita said was ?very happy and content now that there is a Philippine embassy in Dublin that will attend to the concerns of Filipinos in Ireland.?
Based on the embassy estimates, there are 12,000 to 20,000 Filipinos in Ireland.
The post in Dublin was part of the plan to open four new embassies this year to strengthen diplomatic relations, provide consular services to the growing number of overseas Filipino workers (OFWs), and promote trade.
The three more embassies will be in Portugal, Finland, and Poland.
The DFA noted the increasing number of Filipinos in Ireland, one of the booming countries in Europe.
With the opening of the chancery in Dublin, the Philippines now has 63 embassies, three permanent missions to the United Nations, one permanent mission to the World Trade Organization, and 21 consulates general.