Centenary of Latvian independence brings UK-Latvia relations to forefront of Christmas celebrations
Foreign Secretary, Jeremy Hunt, and Ambassador of Latvia to the United Kingdom, Baiba Braže, lit the lights of a Latvian Christmas tree this week to mark the country’s 100th year of independence and celebrate the continuing strength of UK-LV relations.
Marked with a special performance from the London Latvian Choir, the 13ft Latvian spruce was installed in the main lobby of the Foreign & Commonwealth Office’s Lancaster House after being transported over 1,500 miles from Valka, Latvia.
Beginning its journey in a Latvian forest nursery, Romfords, the tree was delivered to the Latvian sawmill of BSW Timber (the UK’s largest integrated forestry business), before being transported to the UK.
As a business with strong links to both the UK and Latvia, BSW was asked to deliver the tree from Latvia to the UK.
Hamish Macleod, director of public affairs at BSW, said: “In this, the 100th anniversary year of Latvian independence, we are delighted and honoured to have been involved in the logistics of delivering this magnificent Christmas tree.
“We must send a special thanks to DB Schenker who transported the tree from Riga to Carlisle and S & R Smith & Son who completed the final stages of its journey from Carlisle to Lancaster House.”
Thanking Hamish Macleod and the BSW Timber Group for the assistance provided to get the Christmas tree to London, the Foreign Secretary Jeremy Hunt MP praised the company’s work in Latvia and said that the government is committed to maintaining trade and investment between the two countries without barriers.
As one of the first countries to recognise Latvia as an independent state, the UK Foreign Secretary celebrated the historical ties of both friendship and business between the UK and Latvia and talked of a continued relationship with the country.
Despite current challenges faced in international politics, both the Ambassador of Latvia and the Foreign Secretary stated that the relationship between the countries will continue to grow on the basis of friendship, support and collaboration, with the Ambassador adding: “The many ties between our countries will not change.”
Mr Macleod added: “BSW Timber Group has a fantastic relationship with Latvia and with the support of both the Foreign Secretary and the Ambassador of Latvia, we look forward to continuing to grow and nurture our business relationships in Latvia for many years to come.”
To find out more about BSW Timber, visit www.bsw.co.uk or call 0800 587 8887.