Aquino: Europe trip yields $2.3B in investments
MANILA, Philippines – President Benigno Aquino III said it was "mission accomplished" as far as his official trip to Europe is concerned as it generated about $2.3 billion in investments to the Philippines, and gained support for the country's territorial fight in the South China Sea, and the war against climate change.
Aquino ended his week-long trip to Europe on Saturday, September 20, in Berlin, Germany – the final stop in a 4-nation visit that also took him to Spain, Belgium and France. He proceeded to Boston, the first stop of his working visit to 3 key US cities beginning Saturday (Sunday, Manila time).
Aquino's European trip yielded around $2.3 billion in investments from 19 companies, the President told reporters over coffee on Friday night, September 19 (early morning Saturday, Manila time) in Berlin.
Of the amount, $908 million has been committed while $1.47 billion are prospective.
"We had a total so far of 19 companies that we talked to, and between the government side and the business entities. They all praised the economic performance of our country. From our engagements in Europe alone, we are expecting around $2.3 billion in investments in the sectors of manufacturing, energy, the IT-BPM sector, infrastructure, transport," Aquino said.
The President said the Philippines is also working on lobbying for a major investment in manufacturing from Europe but did not specify what it was.
Responding to questions, he cited the following as some of the major accomplishments during the trip:
- Memorandum of Understanding between Ecole nationale d'administration and the Development Academy of the Philippines for academic exchange and collaboration
- Social security agreement that entitles Filipinos in Germany and their dependents to the social security benefits of German nationals and vice versa
- Air Services Agreement with France
At every opportunity, Aquino introduced the Philippines' Triple Action Plan in seeking a peaceful resolution to the West Philippine Sea dispute, which was supported by European leaders.
The President arrived in Boston Sunday morning (Manila time) for a 4-day visit primarily to participate in the United Nations Climate Change Conference at the UN headquarters in New York.
He will also meet with executives of big US firms in San Francisco before returning to Manila, where he is due to arrive on September 24. – Rappler.com
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