It is great to see such strong ongoing relations between our two countries.The Duke of Sussex
Ambassador, Ladies and Gentlemen.
I am delighted to be able to celebrate the official birthday of Her Majesty The Queen with you this evening, and bring with me her warmest wishes to you all. I am particularly pleased to be here in Chile - not least because you are still gripped by the World Cup!
Chile has a fascinating history and an amazing social and geographical variety. Both my Father and Brother have spent time here and have told me may wonderful stories; not surprisingly it is a country that I have wanted to visit for some time.
I am very grateful for the warm welcome I have received since arriving last night. It is great to see such strong ongoing relations between our two countries.
I know that we have firm historical links, and I’m delighted to see that our commercial relationship also goes from strength to strength. The new partnership we are working on together to support science and innovation will hopefully mean many more young scientists and entrepreneurs from our countries will be able to work together in the future.
It was an enormous pleasure to meet The President this morning; I was very struck by the importance that she attaches to education. I hope that our two countries will continue to work together throughout the education system, so that the next generation, the important one, will be able to benefit from the rich experiences both our countries have to offer.
I was hugely impressed by the visit I paid this afternoon to the Special Operations Brigade; and I would like to pay tribute here to the peace keeping role that Chile plays with such distinction around the world from Haiti all the way through to Bosnia. This is of enormous value to the whole international community.
I am looking forward to meeting the 'Bomberos' in Valparaiso tomorrow, in particular the volunteers from the British Fire Brigade. Their efforts - along with all volunteer firemen and women - to fight the recent fire in the city were a clear example of their tremendous bravery and commitment. The tragic loss of life could have been so much worse had it not been for their heroic actions to tackle the blaze and evacuate whole communities.
I also understand that significant numbers of young people volunteered in the first days after the fire, to help those who had lost everything. Such selfless displays of courage and community spirit act as an example to the rest of the world.
I have been told to expect real determination and resilience when I meet some of those involved tomorrow, although this doesn’t surprise me at all from a country which has unfortunately had to deal with many natural disasters in recent years.
Finally, I cannot finish without mentioning football - although this is a very sore subject at home - and the diplomatic challenge I face having just spent the last four days in Brazil.
Chile has build great momentum in their games so far; I would like to wish Claudio Bravo, Alexis Sanchez and the team the best of luck tomorrow. I'm looking forward to a fantastic game. I'm not sure if I'll be wearing a Chile shirt but I hope the best team wins.