Diplomatic Dialogue: A Breakfast Meeting with Michel Gerebtzoff, Consul General of Belgium

  • 11/09/2021
  • 8:00 AM - 9:30 AM
  • Offices of Arnall Golden Gregory LLP, Atlanta
  • 1

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United States - Belgium Relations. The United States established diplomatic relations with Belgium in 1832 following Belgium’s declaration of independence from the Netherlands. The United States and Belgium are good partners and NATO allies, maintaining a cooperative relationship on a number of foreign policy issues. The Belgian public holds goodwill and affection for Americans as a result of the U.S. role during and after the two World Wars, including Belgium’s liberation from Nazi Germany by British, Canadian, and U.S. forces in 1944. As an outward-looking nation, Belgium works closely with the United States bilaterally and in international and regional organizations to encourage economic and political cooperation and assistance to developing countries. The United States appreciates Belgian activism in international security operations, including its participation in the NATO Resolute Support Mission in Afghanistan, the EU Training Mission in Mali, and the Defeat-ISIS Coalition, in addition to its contributions to various other NATO missions. Belgium is also a key provider of humanitarian, reconstruction, and development assistance to Afghanistan, Iraq, and Syria, as well as many countries in Africa. As the host country of the EU and NATO headquarters, Belgium plays an important role in European and Transatlantic diplomacy. 

Michel Gerebtzoff was born in Geneva on March 3, 1972, into a family with Russian and French roots. He graduated as a Water and Forestry Engineer from the Faculty of Agronomic Sciences in Gembloux, Belgium. He first started a career in the private sector, as a specialist in geographic databases and earth observation systems. 

At the age of 30, he passed the diplomatic competition and joined Foreign Affairs, becoming Embassy Secretary in Geneva (WTO and WIPO, from 2005 to 2008) and then in Beijing (2008-2012). After a year at the Directorate General of European Affairs (trade policy department), he returned to China, to Guangzhou , to head the office for the promotion of exports and investments of the Walloon Region (2013-2016). During that time he was also appointed to the Governing Board of the American International School of Guangzhou.

 Upon his return to Brussels, he became an advisor at the Permanent Representation of Belgium to the European Union, in charge of trade, research and space (2016-2017), after which he became Chief of Staff to the Deputy Permanent Representative of Belgium to the European Union (2017-2019).In 2019 he joined the cabinet of Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Foreign Affairs Didier Reynders before becoming Deputy Chief of Staff to Minister of Foreign Affairs Philippe Goffin (2019-2020). In that capacity, he sat on one of the main pandemic management bodies.

Michel Gerebtzoff took office as Consul General of Belgium in Atlanta on August 1, 2020. He is married and the father of two daughters. 

 

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