I’m very pleased to welcome Angela here on the last of the 22 visits you have made to the UK in your 16 years as German Chancellor. In the course of that time some things have changed beyond recognition, but for much of your tenure it was certainly a tradition, Angela, for England to lose to Germany in international football tournaments and I’m obviously grateful to you for breaking with that tradition, just for once.
Nonetheless, one thing that has stayed the same is your commitment to the UK-Germany relationship. As you once said, we share the same values. And we share a lot more than that. Germany is the UK’s second largest trading partner, three-quarters of a million Brits work for German companies or vice versa. More than 21,000 Germans attend UK Universities and one in five people in this country are driving around in a German car. And today Angela and I have agreed to expand those links because we are expanding our youth exchanges, creating a new cultural dialogue and as we speak an energy superhighway is being established between our countries which will enable British tea to be brewed with the harvest of German sunshine and German Bratwurst will be grilled using British wind power.
Angela you’ve just addressed the British Cabinet – I hope you enjoyed it- and you’re the first foreign leader to do so this century. And what we’ve also agreed is that from now on the German and UK Cabinets will meet every year to discuss shared issues in the first arrangement of its kind for the UK.
Angela, on behalf of the UK, I want to thank you for your truly historic commitment to not just to the UK-German relationship but to global diplomacy more generally. I think over the last year, 18 months in particular, your scientific expertise has been instrumental in guiding the global response to the pandemic, and, as I was saying, a commitment to science and research is something our counties share and want to develop together.
It is no coincidence that two of the world’s most successful coronavirus vaccines – Pfizer Biontech and Oxford-AstraZeneca – came out of German and British labs.
I’m very proud that today we are establishing the new Herschel Medal for German and British women in Astrophysics in your honour – just one, Angela, of the lasting legacies of your leadership.
It’s a great privilege to welcome you here today Angela, over to you.
- July 2, 2021 at 3:56 pm by Editor (displayed above)
- July 2, 2021 at 3:56 pm by Editor