MANILA — President Benigno S. Aquino III reiterated on Wednesday his commitment to further support the domestic economy’s growth by encouraging more businessmen to put funds in the Philippines.
In his speech before leaving for his four-day trip to the United States and Canada from May 6-10, 2015, the President said his trip will enable the country to strengthen partnership with the two major economies of the world as well as promote the Philippines’ tourism sector.
”Alam nating mula sa positibong pagsasamahan umuusbong ang mas maraming oportunidad para sa lahat,” he said.
The President cited that these two countries, which are also members of the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) Forum, are considered as the second home of Filipinos overseas due to the large number of expatriates there.
”At bilang host-economy ng APEC ngayong taon, layon nating isulong ang mas bukas, mas matatag, at mas positibong transpormasyon sa merkado ng Asya-Pasipiko. Kukunin natin ang pagkakataong ito, para lalong pagtibayin ang pagsisikap tungo sa nagkakaisang adhikain, gayundin ang pagkalap pa ng interes mula sa mga negosyante ng United States at Canada para lalong mapalago ang pamumuhunan sa ating bansa,” he said.
The President will go straight to Chicago and is scheduled to meet with members of the US Chamber of Commerce and the US-ASEAN Business Council.
He said that since the US is the third biggest trading partner of the Philippines, he will push to further boost this cooperation to stress the country’s economic and business readiness.
He also said that since the largest Filipino community in Midwest United States are in Chicago, he will assure the immigrants there that the Philippines has improved so much because of the reforms introduced in the last four years.
Meanwhile, the President will have his first official state visit in Canada upon the invitation of Canadian Governor General David Johnston and Prime Minister Stephen Harper.
He is set to ink some memorandum of understanding (MOU) that will strengthen the bond between the two countries.
He said he will thank Canadian leaders for their help after the Philippines’ Eastern Visayas was hit by typhoon “Yolanda” (Haiyan) in November 2013 as well as on the advanced economy’s decision to double its official development assistance in 2014 to USD 11.95 million and its move to consider the Philippines as “Country of Focus” for bilateral assistance.
Canada is also a supporter of the Philippines’ peace process as well as the emerging economy’s employment program through Jobstart Philippines, which was given a USD 3.6 million budget and is being implemented by the Department of Labor and Employment (DOLE).
President Aquino is scheduled to meet with Canadian businessmen and Filipinos living in Toronto and Vancouver.
”Ang atin po: Di natin mamasamain kung maisipan ng Canada na higitan pa ang posisyon nito bilang ating 7th largest source ng turista noong 2014,” he said.
The President said they will not only promote the Philippines as a business and tourism destination but will proudly declare Filipinos’ readiness to contribute in achieving development not only for the region but the next generation as well.