MANILA – Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau on Tuesday said he wants stronger people-to-people ties between Canada and the Philippines.
At a press briefing during the 31st ASEAN Summit that the Philippines is hosting from November 10-14, Trudeau said his visit in Manila also served as an opportunity to boost people-to-people ties between the two countries.
“Philippines is Canada’s largest source of immigrants. Indeed, Tagalog is spoken from coast to coast to coast,” he highlighted, adding that the two countries continue to grow closer every day.
The Canadian PM emphasized that closer ties between Filipinos and Canadians would lead to more opportunities for hardworking people to get ahead in an increasingly globalized world.
Trudeau said that many Canadian and Filipino entrepreneurs choose to grow their businesses in one country or the other, and cited as an example, the fast food chain Jollibee.
Months ago, Trudeau visited a Jollibee store branch in Winnipeg and also visited a branch in Manila last Sunday.
With stronger people-to-people ties, the Canadian PM also noted that this would not only lead to a strengthened economic opportunities, but a better opportunity to help.
According to him, Canada is always willing to lend a helping hand.
For instance, the Likhaan Center for Women’s Health which aims to provide quality health and family planning services here, has been working with the Inter Pares, a Canadian non-government organization.
The partnership, Trudeau said, aims to reduce maternal deaths.
Trudeau said that through Likhaan’s partnership with Inter Pares as well as with the Canadian government, three new clinics have been set up in the Philippines.
“These clinics provide invaluable support to mothers and their newborns,” he said, adding that about 16,000 women and 6,400 children are expected to benefit from the partnership.
Trudeau also said Canada is investing on women to help families and communities to succeed.
He said Canada will be investing 17.8 million dollars for over five years for a sexual health and empowerment project.
The said project, which will be implemented by Oxfam, also targets to improve access to reproductive health services to thousands of women living in poor and remote regions in the country. (PNA)