MANILA — The government has earmarked P11.2 million for President Benigno S. Aquino III’s visit to Busan for the 25th Association of Southeast Asian Nations-Republic of Korea (ASEAN-ROK) Commemorative Summit from December 11 to 12, Executive Secretary Paquito N. Ochoa Jr. said on Thursday.
President Aquino left this morning via a chartered flight to Busan, accompanied by Finance Secretary Cesar Purisima, Trade and Industry Secretary Gregory Domingo, Cabinet Secretary Jose Rene Almendras, Press Secretary Herminio Coloma, Presidential Management Staff Chief Julia Andrea Abad and Presidential Protocol Chief Celia Anna Feria.
The amount covers expenses for transportation, accommodation, food, equipment and other requirements of the Chief Executive and his 48-member delegation.
“President Aquino’s attendance to the 25th ASEAN-ROK Commemorative Summit is an occasion to fortify our country’s relationship with South Korea in various areas of cooperation such as trade and investment, development, labor and migration, tourism, among others,” Ochoa said.
According to the Department of Foreign Affairs (DFA), President Aquino is scheduled to deliver his country-statement on this year’s summit theme, “Building Trust, Bringing Happiness,” and hold a bilateral meeting with South Korean President Park Geun-hye, who will host a welcome dinner and cultural performance to officially welcome the ASEAN leaders.
Initially, the Republic of Korea was a sectoral dialogue partner of the ASEAN and became a full dialogue partner of the ASEAN in 1991. The dialogue relations between the ASEAN and ROK were upgraded into a strategic partnership in 2010.