News Details | 21-Jan-2013

NTU, the French and German embassies commemorate the 50th Anniversary of the Elysée Treaty

Nanyang Technological University (NTU) is holding a Public Lecture to commemorate the 50th Anniversary of the Elysée Treaty, a treaty of friendship between France and Germany.

Jointly organised by the French and German Embassies and NTU, the Public Lectures aim to highlight the scientific and educational bonds between France and Germany.

During the Public Lectures, Nobel Laureates Professor Albert Fert from France and Professor Hartmut Michel from Germany will speak on Information Technology and Biofuels respectively, topics which are relevant to today’s economy and the future.

Also present at the commemorative event are Angelika Viets, Ambassador of Germany to Singapore and Olivier Caron, Ambassador of France to Singapore.

Professor Fert was awarded the 2007 Nobel Prize for physics for his discovery of giant magnetoresistance (GMR) and his contribution to the development of spin electronics, or spintronics. GMR brought about a breakthrough in the development of gigabyte hard disks used today.

Professor Hartmut Michel was awarded the 1988 Nobel Prize for Chemistry for his significant contribution towards an understanding of photosynthesis. He won the prize jointly with German Biochemists Johann Deisenhofer and Robert Huber. (More information about the Nobel Laureates can be found in the Annexe)

“I am delighted that the Embassies of France and Germany in Singapore approached our University to co-organise the Public Lecture Event to celebrate the 50th Anniversary of the Elysée Treaty,” said NTU President, Professor Bertil Andersson. “The signing of this friendship treaty between France and Germany was a historic moment in European history with significant impact on the post-war era in Europe, and NTU with its strong international profile has many links to both countries.”

The Elysee Treaty was signed by French President Charles de Gaulle and German Chancellor Konrad Adenauer on January 22, 1963. The treaty formulated areas of close cooperation between France and Germany, such as at the highest political level, defence and security, culture and education or research and development.

“The Elysée Treaty set the seal on reconciliation between the two countries after centuries of rivalry,” said Angelika Viets, German Ambassador to Singapore. “It is the first time that a French and a German Nobel laureate are sharing a podium in Singapore, not only giving a public lecture, but representing on this very special day the close bonds between France and Germany in the field of science and research."
Today, France and Germany are the closest allies on the European continent. Both countries also spearheaded the “idea of a Europe”, the wider European Integration which resulted in the creation of the European Union of 27 Member States.

“This joint public lecture sends yet another strong signal of continued political will and engagement by both countries, a commitment which will remain faithful to the spirit and tenets of the Élysée Treaty,” said Olivier Caron, French Ambassador to Singapore. “We are encouraged by the increasing strength of our cooperation over the past 50 years, and have every confidence that the best 50 years are yet to come!”

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Media contact:

Jeremy Koh
Assistant Director
Corporate Communications Office
Nanyang Technological University
Tel: (65) 6790 6681


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