State visit to Portugal - program

His Majesty King Willem-Alexander and Her Majesty Queen Máxima are to pay a state visit to the Portuguese Republic from 10 to 12 October 2017 at the invitation of President Marcelo Rebelo de Sousa (see Government Information Service press release no. 132). The King and Queen will visit Lisbon, Alverca, Sintra and Cascais. They will be accompanied by the Minister of Foreign Affairs. The Minister for Foreign Trade and Development Cooperation will head a parallel trade mission to Portugal with representatives of the airport development and aircraft manufacturing industry and the environmental technology and sustainable energy sector.

The Netherlands and Portugal have close political, economic and cultural ties and shared values on the world stage. The two countries share a maritime history and now come together as partners for peace, security and prosperity in forums such as the United Nations, NATO and the European Union. Economic relations between the Netherlands and Portugal are good, but there is scope for growth. The countries have the potential to strengthen each other in further developing their knowledge-intensive economies.

Tuesday 10 October

The state visit will begin on the morning of Tuesday 10 October at the Monastery of Jerónimos in Belém, Lisbon. President Rebelo de Sousa will receive the King and Queen at a welcome ceremony. The royal couple will then lay a wreath at the tomb of Portugal’s greatest poet and national hero, Luís de Camões. This will be followed by a guided tour of the Monastery of Jerónimos and a meeting with the president in Belém Palace.

The King and Queen will then meet with Eduardo Ferro Rodrigues, President of the Assembly of the Republic. In the afternoon they will be received by the mayor of Lisbon, Fernando Medina, after which they will travel by tram to the districts of Mouraria and Intendente, which are among Lisbon’s oldest neighbourhoods. During the economic crisis initiatives were launched in these working-class areas to improve the local living and business environments. A number of these projects form part of the New Europe-Cities in Transition network, which was set up by Pakhuis de Zwijger in Amsterdam and is partially financed by the EU-Europe for Citizens Programme. The King and Queen will talk to the initiators of various projects. 

The first day of the visit will end with a state banquet hosted by President Rebelo de Sousa at the Palace of Ajuda. The president and the King will both give a speech at the dinner.

Wednesday 11 October

The second day of the state visit will start with a visit to the Champalimaud Centre for the Unknown in Lisbon. The institute operates laboratories for state-of-the-art biomedical research and an advanced clinic for cancer patients. The King and Queen will learn about the treatment methods used and about partnerships with the Netherlands. 

The Minister of Foreign Affairs and his Portuguese counterpart, Minister Augusto Santos Silva, will give a lecture on European cooperation at the University of Lisbon. They will then be joined by the King and Queen, who will talk to students about the challenges facing the European Union.

During a trade lunch King Willem-Alexander and Queen Máxima will meet the members of the parallel trade mission and representatives of their Portuguese network. They will also witness the signing of a number of partnership contracts.

In the afternoon the royal couple will open a temporary exhibition at the Museu Nacional de Arte Antiga. The Rijksmuseum has provided Rembrandt’s Landscape with a Stone Bridge on loan for the occasion. There will also be pieces from the Royal Collections of the Netherlands on display. Following their museum visit the couple will be received by Prime Minister António Costa.

In the evening the King and Queen will host a concert and reception to thank the president and Portuguese invitees for their hospitality during the state visit. It will be performed by the Dutch-Frisian singer Nynke Laverman and fado singer Cristina Branco at the National Theatre D. Maria II. Following the concert the King and Queen will take leave of the president.

Thursday 12 October

King Willem-Alexander and Queen Máxima will begin the third and final day of their state visit in Alverca, north of Lisbon. There they will visit OGMA, Indústría Aeronáutica de Portugal. Following a tour of the hangars the royal couple will speak with the companies taking part in the parallel trade mission about opportunities for Dutch-Portuguese cooperation in aircraft manufacturing and maintenance and airport development.

The King and Queen will then continue to the National Fire Service College in Sintra, where firefighters receive senior fire officer training with the help of simulation software developed in Delft. The couple will then visit the National Palace of Sintra in the town’s historic centre. Over the centuries the 14th-century palace with its characteristic chimneys was the residence of Portuguese monarchs.

In the afternoon the state visit will end in the coastal town of Cascais with a reception for the Dutch community in Portugal. Here the King and Queen will meet Dutch nationals living and working in Portugal.