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The Embassy of Colombia in Berlin

Contact

Address: Kurfürstenstrasse 84, 10787 Berlin, Germany

Tel.: (+49) 30 26 39 61 0

Fax: (+49) 30 26 39 61 25

E-mail: info@botschaft-kolumbien.de

www.embajada-colombia.de

The Ambassador

Amb. Juan Mayr Maldonado

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Amb. Juan Mayr Maldonado is a Colombian photographer and environmentalist, and he is currently serving as Ambassador of Colombia to Germany.

From 1993 to 1996, Amb. Maldonado was elected Vice President of the World Conservation Union. In 1998 he became Minister of Environment of Colombia. He has also been president of the United Nations' conference on Biosafety. The ambassador served as Vice President and Regional Director of the World Conservation Union (IUCN), and is one of the members of the High Level Panel of Eminent Persons of the Secretary General of the UN on civil society and the Blue Ribbon Panel Chairman IDB.

He is a member of the National Conciliation Commission and Advisor to the Resident and Humanitarian Coordinator United Nations Coordinator in Colombia, the United Nations Program for Development (UNDP), and General Coordinator of the National Committee on Biodiversity and Competitiveness. Amb. Maldonado was awarded the Goldman Environmental Prize in 1993, for leading a struggle for protecting biodiversity in the Sierra Nevada de Santa Marta. He lived two years with the Kogi, and founded the Fundación Pro-Sierra Nevada de Santa Marta in 1986. In 1994 the Colombian government returned 19,500 hectares of traditional lands to the indigenous peoples of the Sierra Nevada.

History

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Germany and Colombia have enjoyed long and friendly relations due to the German businesses operating in Colombia, the scientific and academic exchange, as well as cultural institutions and development cooperation. The last visit to Colombia is by Federal Foreign Minister Steinmeier in 2015, whereas the most recent visit to Germany by Colombian President Santos was in November 2014. Germany is Colombia’s principal trading partner in the European Union, and there has been a marked growth in bilateral trade in recent years. A number of major German companies have their own production facilities in Colombia.

German development cooperation with Colombia focuses on peace development and crisis prevention as well as environmental protection and resource conservation. A third priority area, sustainable economic development, was added in 2012. As for the academic relations, they are close, as is evidenced by the approximately 2600 Colombians studying at German universities, by university partnerships, exchanges of researches and lectures and cooperation under scholarship programmes. On the other hand, there is a growing number of German academics and researchers working at universities and research institutions in Colombia. Finally, the Goethe Institute offers an extensive cultural programme and numerous language courses.