German Consul General for Midwest enjoys New Ulm
NEW ULM — During Sunday’s Bavarian Blast festivities, New Ulm Mayor Terry Sveine introduced a special guest to the city.
Wolfgang Moessinger, the German Consul General for the Midwest, visited New Ulm. Moessinger oversees German interests in Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Kansas, Kentucky, Mississippi, Missouri, Nebraska, Ohio, North Dakota, South Dakota, Wisconsin and Minnesota.
Moessinger said as a consul, his job has three purposes. The first is to provide administrative support, issue passports and visas to people planning to travel to Germany.
The second task is to oversee German interests in the Midwest. This includes reporting back on economic issues.
Moessinger said in recent years the American Midwest has become of economic and political interest to Germany. It is not an area Germany wants to neglect. He said the Midwest has always been economically important to Germany because many German companies have subsidiaries in the region; especially supply chains for automobiles.
Moessinger was happy to report New Ulm had a successful economy and said it could be a great place for a German company as its hospitality to the German people was clear.
Moessinger also helps Midwestern companies looking to do business in Germany.
The third aspect of the consul’s position is to promote Germany, which was the reason he came to New Ulm. Moessinger said in 2019, Gov. Tim Walz told him he needed to visit New Ulm because it was the most German-American community. Moessinger decided to do a visit during Bavarian Blast. His visit was originally planned for 2020, but the pandemic delayed it until 2021.
He told the crowds at the Blast that it was great to see people doing things again and he was pleased to see so much of the German heritage.
Moessinger was given a tour of the city by Sveine. Asked what he was most surprised to see in terms of German heritage in New Ulm, Moessinger said Turner Hall was a phenomenal work of German architecture but he was surprised and delighted that everyone was knowledgeable about the Turners and why they came to New Ulm.
He said it was more evidence of New Ulm’s strong connection to its heritage.
“Thank you for keeping the traditions alive,” he said.