By Manny Galvez (The Philippine Star)
BALER, Aurora, Philippines – The Spanish government is joining the Philippines and Mexico in pushing for the nomination of the route of the galleon trade to the World Heritage List.
Spanish Ambassador Luis Antonio Calvo said nominating the route of the galleon trade between Manila and Acapulco to the “Memory of the World” program of the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) is a way of acknowledging “the first steps in the long road to global trade.”
Calvo said the nomination could pave the way for the preservation of common documentary heritage, facilitate access to such heritage and increase understanding and awareness of its global importance.
“The said initiative would stimulate cooperation to bring together a documentary and archival collection about the Galleon Trade Route and the valuable materials kept in the archives of the Philippines, Spain and Mexico,” said Calvo, who was guest of honor and speaker during the observance of the 13 Philippine-Spanish Friendship Day.
The nomination of the Mania-Acapulco galleon trade route to the World Heritage List was an initiative of the UNESCO National Commission of the Philippines and the Department of Foreign Affairs in partnership with the University of Santo Tomas Center for Conservation of Cultural Property and Environment in the Tropics.
The Manila-Acapulco galleon trade linked four continents and two oceans, contributing to the development of trade and the exchange of cultural traditions and knowledge in Asia, Europe, North America and South America.
Today, it is still regarded as the earliest manifestation of globalization, having influenced the politics, philosophy, commerce and trade development of almost the entire world.
The Spanish envoy also said he subscribes to the idea of supporting the Philippines and other potentially interested states in adopting the UNESCO Convention on the Protection of Underwater Cultural Heritage Parks, to which Spain is a signatory since 2005.
Calvo stressed that “under the sea lies a very important piece of our past that still has to be recovered, discovered and finally rescued from oblivion.”
Courtesy: The Philippine Star
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