Princess Elisabeth Station at ATCM in Baltimore

During the 32nd Antarctic Treaty Consultative Meeting (ATCM) and 50th anniversary celebration in Baltimore, Maryland (USA), the Belgian minister in charge of Economy and Administrative Simplification, Mr. Vincent Van Quickenborne, was proud to announce Belgium's return to Antarctica through the achievement of the Princess Elisabeth Research Station. Special congratulations were given to Alain Hubert, Founding President of the International Polar Foundation (IPF) and Director of the Princess Elisabeth Station Antarctica project, "whose energy and determination transformed this project into reality."

Festivities celebrating the Antarctic Treaty's 50th anniversary began in Washington on April 6th in the presence of U.S. Secretary of State, Hillary Clinton. The ATCM then continued at the Baltimore Convention Center from April 7th through 17th. Nearly 400 people representing 47 countries attended the event in order to discuss the future of Antarctica's status amongst the international community, its environment and scientific research.

On Wednesday April 15th, the IPF gave a special presentation on the Princess Elisabeth Station at the Convention Center. It was attended by the Belgian Ambassador in Washington, Jan Mathyessen, and no less than 150 people. After a short film retracing the expedition achievements, Ms. Nighat Amin, Program Administrator of the Princess Elisabeth Station project and Vice-President of the IPF, introduced the international crowd to the technological performances of this unique and remarkable project and the public-private partnership which has contributed to its realization.