Visit to North Rhine-Westphalia

The Secretary of State for Federal, European and International Affairs, Dr. Mark Speich, invited the 16 Federal State group to the West Lounge at the State Representation of North Rhine-Westphalia on 25 October 2018. With almost 18 million inhabitants, NRW is the most densely populated state that features the Ruhr region as the largest industrial and metropolitan area in Germany and within Europe. Dusseldorf is the state capital with 618,000 population and the largest and oldest city is Cologne with 1 million population.

After a warm welcome by the plenipotentiary of North Rhine-Westphalia, the former head of administrative did the introduction and led the tour to the spectacular building which was designed by the Dusseldorf architects Petzinka and Pink. The building consists of a parabolic diamond façade made of wood, steel and glass. Regarding the ecological qualities and its expansive architecture, it is an impressive building. It is often referred to as the Embassy of the West. It is also a very popular and well frequented venue for exhibitions, discussions and cultural events.

After a delicious lunch buffet, the second part of the event was an interesting presentation of Ruhrtriennale by Director Dr. Stefanie Carp. Ruhrtriennale is an international art and culture festival in the Ruhr region. The venues incorporate several industrial monuments and buildings in the region such as former factories, coking plants, coal mines, salt warehouse etc. Jahrhunderthalle in Bochum with the adjoining turbine hall and the steam house is the center of the Ruhrtriennale. There will be spectacle, opera, theater, pop and concert music as well as dance and performance, literature, film and fine arts. The members took a keen interest in this unique festival and are looking forward to the next year program.