The arrival of ambassadors from 11 countries received by Alfonso de Maria y Campos, general director of the National Institute of Anthropology and History (INAH), in representation of Felipe Calderon, President of Mexico, gave start to the 3rd International Festival La Nao Acapulco 2009, celebrated from November 5th to 8th 2009.

Upon disembarking of the diplomats –a remembrance of the first historic trip that united America and Asia in 1565-, the execution of the Dragon’s dance marked the beginning of cultural activities of the festival, which offers artistic expressions from Mexico, South and North Korea, China, Philippines, Thailand, Indonesia, India, Japan, Peru, Chile and Spain, countries intimately linked to the Pacific Basin.

The inauguration was attended by Zeferino Torreblanca Galindo, governor of Guerrero State, Manuel Añorve Baños, Acapulco Municipal President, and the INAH general director representing the federal government, Alfonso de Maria, who acknowledged the people’s effort to maintain alive the festival, which conserves the historical character of the world famous port and has become a social encounter where everybody can participate in free cultural activities.

Alfonso de Maria y Campos recalled the words of Felipe Calderon: “We need more Mexico in the world and more of the world in Mexico”, mentioning that a festival like this honors this maxim and strengthens cultural politics, establishing contact with all latitudes, remarking Pacific Basin countries have great markets and cultural richness to share.
INAH general director remarked that Pacific Ocean is the largest sea and the space in the planet with more economic and cultural possibilities. Over the years, several artists have represented it, such as Miguel Covarrubias, who put it in the center of the planet, because, he added, not everything has to pass through Europe, being a relevant contribution of the Nao.

Finally, Alfonso de Maria remarked that a little-known fact about the Philippines conquest is that it was carried out by New Spain people and Mexicans, in the name of the Spanish Crown.

“The Philippines were discovered from the New Spain, being this the reason why this nation and other parts of Orient have cultural links with Mexico. We are related biological and culturally with the area, and given our strategic geographic position, we must take the challenge of establishing commercial and cultural relations with fellow nations of the Pacific Basin”.

Zeferino Torreblanca, Guerrero State governor, recalled that the festival celebrates the cultural encounter bonded by commerce and fate, which implications have been largely studied by history.

He remarked the Nao de China was the cultural and economic globalization pioneer. In this sense, culture is an inclusion factor that strengthens sovereignty and identity, as well as a carrier of freedom.         

Acapulco Municipal President, Manuel Añorve, mentioned that the International Festival La Nao represents the will of Acapulco inhabitants to conserve, develop and divulgate its outstanding historic traditions. He reminded the first Galeon de Manila sailed towards Acapulco in October 12th 1565 and the first Commercial Fair took place in Acapulco from January 10th to February 25th 1582, considered the most important commercial event of its time.