News Release

Philippines committed to enhancing collaboration with GCC countries, President Duterte says

President Rodrigo Roa Duterte poses for a photo opportunity with Saudi Ambassador Hisham S.A. Al Qahtani, Omani Ambassador Munther Mahfoodh Salim Al-Mantheri, Emirates Ambassador Mohamed Obaid Salem Alqataam Alzaabi, Qatari Ambassador Dr. Ali Ibrahim Al-Malki, and Kuwaiti Ambassador Musaed Saleh A M Althwaikh after the joint courtesy call on the President at the Malacañan Palace on December 15, 2021. With them are Foreign Affairs Acting Secretary Ma. Theresa Lazaro, Special Envoy Amable Aguiluz, and Assistant Secretary Alfonso Ferdinand Ver. RICHARD MADELO/ PRESIDENTIAL PHOTO

The Philippines is committed to further strengthen bilateral ties with the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) countries particularly on labor reforms, economy, and climate change, President Rodrigo Roa Duterte said on Thursday.

During the joint courtesy call of the ambassadors of Oman, Qatar, Kuwait, Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates in Malacañang, President Duterte said the Philippines looks forward to working closely with GCC partners as they implement their respective labor reform initiatives.

“I hope that these reforms succeed and evolve to encompass the more vulnerable sectors in the GCC labor market, particularly household service workers,” said the President.

He also noted the successful implementation of the GCC countries’ strategic frameworks aimed at economic diversification, opening opportunities for broader cooperation in various spheres, particularly climate change.

“The Philippines is keenly interested in working with our GCC partners to realize our shared aspiration for a better future for all our peoples,” the President added.

At the same time, the President expressed his gratitude to the governments of the Gulf states for their assistance to the Philippines’ pandemic response efforts and in the repatriation of Filipino nationals affected by the COVID-19 crisis.

For their part, the GCC ambassadors expressed appreciation for the opportunity to meet the President and discuss issues of mutual interest such as pandemic cooperation, labor reform, migration and development, regional peace and security, climate change and energy. PND