The Oregon Consular Corps is an organization consisting of general consuls, honorary consuls, honorary vice-consuls, and ex officio members who have represented or do represent governments of foreign nations in Oregon. Oregon has had Consular Services for over a century, with Consular representatives stationed in Portland, for the most part, having jurisdiction extending throughout the Western United States. In some cases, a United States citizen or permanent resident is appointed by a foreign country as their representative. These officials hold the rank of Honorary General Consul, Honorary Consul, or Honorary Vice Consul, dependent on the status accorded by the appointed authority. These appointments must also have the approval of the United States State Department.
(foto: Mr. Jim Rudd, Honorary Consul, introducing one of the night’s award recepients)
Honorary Consuls perform essentially the same duties as Career Consuls, although they are usually not salaried by the represented country.
Among functions performed by consular representatives are the following:
1. Promotion of their country’s trade within the area to which they are assigned.
2. Offering protection and assistance to their country’s shipping interests, legalization of ships’ papers, assistance to their native sailors in distress, and adjudication of some shipping matters.
3.Rendering assistance and protection of nationals of the country they represent.
4. Administrating oaths, legalizing foreign documents as required by their country’s laws, issuing passports, and visas.
5. Acting as spokepersons concerning their country’s policies and achievements in fields such as culture, tourism, and trade.
Under regulations formulated by 92 nations at the Vienna Convention on Consular Relations, Honorary Consuls are entitled to most of the privileges and immunities accorded Career Consuls. These laws governed Diplomatic Intercourse and Immunities since April 18, 1961.
The companies honored this year by OCC with the 2009 International Awards were:
- NorthWest Film Center
- Medical Teams International
Also three Portland State University students and three Oregon State University students received scolarships from OCC.
The event took place on Tuesday, January 27, 2009 at the new Nines hotel on top of Macy’s downtown Portland.