MANILA, Philippines – Former President Fidel V Ramos said on Thursday, March 29, that Philippine business would come to a standstill if North Korea pushes through with its planned missile launch.
“The launching of a rocket would affect the Philippines also directly. Can you imagine, even if we are outside the fallout zone of let us assume a nuclear warhead, business will be paralyzed towards East Asia, and that includes us,” Mr Ramos told reporters after the inauguration of the Peftok-Korean War Memorial Hall in Taguig City.
He added: “We cannot export, and we cannot import, and tourism will just die off for a while, until normalcy will be resumed, so that is the danger that we are facing and it’s bad.”
Mr Ramos said that the Philippines does “not have any leverage at all to speak of” when it comes to persuading North Korea to abandon the plan but countries like the United States, South Korea, Russia, and China especially do.
The Philippine government has said it anticipated US help to track a North Korean long-range rocket, part of which is expected to land off the Philippines.
North Korea has said it would launch the rocket to place a satellite in orbit between April 12 and 16, insisting it was for peaceful space research.
But the US and other nations see the launch as a disguised ballistic missile test, and say that it would breach a UN ban on North Korean missile launches. – Rappler.com