Visit by HRH Crown Prince Haakon to Brussels

28/01/2009 // HRH Crown Prince Haakon of Norway officialy inaugurated the newly renovated Norway House and met with President José Manuel Barroso of the European Commission and President Hans Gert Pöttering of the European Parliament.

HRH Haakon met with European Commission President Barroso in the Berlaymont building. Photo: European Commission

The royal visit took place Thursday 22 January. In the evening His Royal Highness The Crown Prince made a speech at the official inauguration of the newly renovated Norway House in Rue Archimède 17.

– Although we have chosen not to be a member of the European Union, we are a part of Europe – and being European is important for Norwegians’ identity, said His Royal Highness.

Although the inauguration ceremony took place in the evening, the Crown Prince was introduced to the new Norway House earlier on Thursday. HRH Haakon was introduced to the staff and got to see the decoration and works of art placed in the building.

Norway’s ambassador to the EU, Oda Helen Sletnes, architect Tore Wiig and CEO of Statsbygg (The Norwegian Directorate of Public Construction and Property), Øivind Christoffersen guided HRH Haakon around the building. The Crown Prince was furthermore welcomed by the Norwegian Ambassador to Belgium, Jostein Bernhardsen, before he was introduced to other Norwegian organizations based in Norway House.

After the tour of the Norway House His Royal Highness visited the three main EU offices. HRH Haakon and State Secretary Walaas was invited to have lunch with European Commission President José Manuel Barroso in the Berlaymont building. Later HRH the Crown Prince met with Deputy Secretary General of the Council of the European Union, Pierre de Boissieu, in the Justus Lipsius building. Finally HRH Haakon was shown around the the premises of the European Parliament by President Hans Gert Pöttering.

European Parliament President Pöttering gave HRH The Crown Prince a tour of the Parliament premises. Photo: European Parliament

From the balcony of Norway House. The Berlaymont building in the background. Photo: Juha Roininen

Source: Anders Berg-Hansen   |   Share on your network   |   print