President Rodrigo Duterte left for Lima, Peru to join 20 other leaders of Pacific rim economies, promising to pitch for the country’s efforts to attract more foreign investors to do business with the Philippines.
The President is meeting other leaders during the 24th Meeting of the Economic Leaders of the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) in Peru.
This year’s APEC Economic Leaders’ Meeting theme is “Quality Growth and Human Capital Development: Foundation for Sustainable Growth in the Asia-Pacific.”
In his departure statement at the Davao International Airport on Thursday, November 17, the President said his trip will be an important opportunity for the Philippines to work closely with its economic partners in the region, enhance efforts to facilitate economic growth and prosperity and determine ways of moving forward to achieve common goals.
“In the meetings, I will bring to the fore key components of my 10-point Socio-Economic Program, particularly improvements in doing business through more efficient and responsive governance, massive investments in new infrastructure, a new focus on the rural development, and increased investments in human capital,” the President said.
“My message to APEC will be clear: The Philippines is open for business. We will do everything to make sure that businesses – particularly our MSMEs – will thrive and flourish,” he added.
The Chief Executive also vowed to highlight government policy support as well as efforts to address corruption and criminality as building blocks of a strong and resilient economy aimed at attaining inclusive and continued growth.
“We must harness the potentials of this huge region to ensure that no one – especially our citizens – are left behind in the march to greater progress and prosperity,” he said.
As he embarks on his first official trip to South America, the President said he is looking forward to expanding his administration’s horizons and pursue an independent foreign policy, highlighting the Philippines’s readiness to deepen its engagement with South America.
“This will be my first official visit to South America, with whom we share a meaningful history and centuries-old affinity. As we look to expand our horizons and pursue an independent foreign policy, the Philippines and the Filipino businesses must be ready to further deepen and broaden our engagement with South America – especially those that straddle the Pacific – as economic partners,” the President said.
At the same time, the President said he will talk to the Social Welfare department officials when he comes back from Peru to discuss the rising number of children being abused, particularly those whose parents work abroad.
Also, he said that some Mideast countries have high incidence of abuses of foreign workers and he underscored the need to improve the living conditions in the Philippines.
“You must understand that we have to improve our country to accommodate of these people because we want them to come home,” the President said.PND