A country functions when it has the people and institutions to drive and facilitate progress. There can be no doubt that while it existed, Diplocat was an active institution in Catalonia; sadly this ends today. It has clearly contributed to the country’s progress, mainly through its actions in the international arena.
Diplocat went to great efforts to generate international ties for Catalonia. It has been my good fortune to meet some of the people who have worked at different levels within the organisation, and I can safely say that they have put a great deal of effort into making people abroad understand what Catalonia is today, and the country it wants to be tomorrow. And to do so, they have had to travel and meet with leaders of institutions, governments and administrations, among other activities. I recently had lunch with a foreign diplomat in Madrid, whom we shall call X, who told me that while recognising the role Diplocat has played, we should provide even more explanations abroad regarding Catalonia’s economic, scientific and technological reality and potential to make us more attractive to investors, international networks, major multilateral initiatives, etc. Thus, in some way, X may have been showing us the path that the structure that restores Diplocat needs to take to make an even greater leap forward, once Catalonia again has its own government.
Diplocat was also involved in academic issues to train competent professionals in international affairs and actions abroad. In alliance with various universities, it promoted five Executive Master’s Degree courses in Diplomacy and Foreign Action at the Barcelona Centre for International Affairs (IBEI). People with different professional profiles, including myself, trained there, and we now share knowledge that has helped improve our competencies in facing a wide range of situations and challenges in foreign action.
In short, it is a necessary area that, although temporarily suspended due to the unique circumstances in the country today, does in fact need to be strengthened and expanded. Above all, I would like to take this opportunity to encourage my colleagues (Albert, Joan, Jordi, Laura and Martí), who have had a difficult day today, but who I hope will soon be fully active again, helping to develop understanding and projects.
Thank you Diplocat.