Official visit to Germany: Reception in Hamburg
Sehr geehrter Herr Erster Bürgermeister,
Meine sehr verehrten Damen und Herren,
Thank you, First Mayor, for the warm welcome we have received here in Hamburg City Hall. It is wonderful to be here!
The spectacular murals that meet us when we enter this beautiful building tell the story of Hamburg:
From the city’s first settlers – to the Hanseatic League – to the industrial port as we know it today. The gateway to the world – Das Tor zur Welt.
It is a story of trade, autonomy, economic power – and a foundation laid by diligent craftspeople – fishermen, shipbuilders, seafarers, tradespeople, and entrepreneurs. In other words: Not unlike the people who still shape and define Hamburg of today, represented by many of the guests here tonight.
It is a story of people comfortable at home, yet worldly – 800 years ago, as well as today.
Ladies and gentlemen,
Meine Damen und Herren,
The North Sea has always been Norway’s highway to Europe, and Hamburg has been our gateway to the world. And it still is. Not only because of the city’s location.
Hamburg and Norway also share a common Hanseatic entrepreneurial spirit and we have similar ambitions. We strive for value creation, social welfare, and a good life for our people.
The long history of cultural exchange is also evident today. Hamburg has been an important scene for the Norwegian creative arts industry.
Norwegian artists, writers and musicians have had their breakthroughs in Hamburg and have called this city a second home. One of them is the writer Ingvar Ambjørnsen, who has lived here since the 1980s and definitely calls Hamburg not his second, but his Home.
You who are gathered here tonight – people from government, business, culture, and the Norwegian community – embody the spirit of our bilateral relations.
You carry the Hanseatic torch of a partnership between Hamburg and Norway that is centuries-old, but still alive and still developing.
I look forward to seeing our partnership continue to grow in the time ahead.
Thank you, Danke schön!