Remarks by Ambassador Ahmet Akif Oktay at the Turkish Cultural Night Reception in Ho Chi Minh City on 2 December 2014
WELCOMING REMARKS BY AMBASSADOR AHMET AKİF OKTAY
AT THE “TURKISH CULTURAL NIGHT” RECEPTION
Ho Chi Minh City, 2 December 2014
Ladies and Gentlemen,
I extend a warm welcome to all of you and thank you for kindly accepting our invitation for this event. We are honored by your presence.
For us, these are truly memorable days. Tomorrow, in this beautiful city, the Istanbul Chamber of Commerce, in cooperation with the Turkish Ministry of Economy, will open the very first “Turkish Products Exhibition” in Vietnam. It will commence at the same time and place as the 12th Vietnam International Trade Fair, which as you know, will be held at the Saigon Exhibition and Convention Center. We are all excited about the Exhibition and looking forward to a successful kick-off tomorrow morning. We would, of course, be more than pleased to see all our guests here at the inauguration ceremony as well.
This is the first time so many Turkish companies are joining hands to organize an Exhibition in Ho Chi Minh City. We are delighted to welcome the high-level delegation of the Istanbul Chamber of Commerce, led by Mr. Dursun Topçu, Vice President of the Chamber’s Executive Board, and representatives of the Turkish companies participating in the Exhibition. We are also very happy to see so many Vietnamese friends here from the major departments, institutions and companies in Ho Chi Minh City, as well as members of the Corps Consulaire. We hope that this get-together will give all of us a chance to make new friends.
On this occasion, we want to give you a taste of the Turkish culture as well. A group of talented young dancers and two professionals specializing in traditional Turkish arts have come from Turkey just for this purpose. First, we will watch a performance by the Tuana Folk Dance Ensemble, which has successfully represented Turkey in many international cultural festivals. Then, two masters of traditional Turkish arts, Mr. Hikmet Barutçugil and Mr. Nasuf Cömert, will introduce their works and their methods for creating them. Mr. Barutçugil will demonstrate the elaborate technique of painting on water, which is known as “ebru” in Turkish and “marbling” in English. He is one of the leading professionals keeping this ancient and venerable artform alive in Turkey. Also on display will be the amazing glass artworks created by Mr. Cömert. Unfortunately, he is unable to offer a live demonstration here, as safety regulations do not permit the use of high-temperature glass melting equipment in this room. Instead, we will play a video clip showing him in action, as he shapes glass into exquisite pieces of art.
The presence of these artists and dancers will no doubt make this a night to remember and I thank each of them for making the long journey from Turkey.
Before concluding my remarks, I would like to express my thanks and appreciation to the Istanbul Chamber of Commerce and their representatives here, for taking the initiative to realize tomorrow’s Exhibition and also sponsoring this event. Without their dedicated efforts at every stage, none of this would have been possible.
On that final note, I wish you all a very pleasant evening. Thank you very much.