Philippine President to attend APEC, ASEAN meetings

By ( Xinhua )

Updated: 2013-10-02

MANILA - Philippine President Benigno S. Aquino III will leave for Indonesia and Brunei Darussalam next week to attend regional summits, the Department of Foreign Affairs (DFA) said Wednesday.

Foreign Affairs spokesman Raul Hernandez said in a news briefing at the presidential palace in Malacanang that President Aquino will go to Bali on Oct 6 to join other leaders in the 21st Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) Economic Leaders' Meeting on Oct 7 to 8.

Hernandez said that Aquino will then go directly to Bandar Seri Bagawan for the 23rd Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) Summit and Related Summits on Oct 9 to 10.

At the APEC Business Advisory Council (ABAC), Aquino will emphasize Philippine initiatives on food security, infrastructure investment, small, micro and medium enterprises, trade-in services, skills and education, women and the economy, Hernandez stated.

For the APEC Economic Leaders' Meeting, Hernandez said Aquino will meet with his counterparts from the other 20 APEC member-economies and discuss issues of mutual concern, particularly to promote trade liberalization and facilitation, economic technical cooperation, and people-to-people connectivity.

"The President will be the lead discussant on 'people-to-people connectivity' and will call for the need to intensify cooperation in cross-border education and skills training as a fundamental step in aligning human resource development with economic growth and resiliency," Hernandez said, as he pointed out President Aquino's further activities during the APEC leaders' retreat session.

At the ASEAN summit and other related meetings, Hernandez said Aquino will continue to focus on advocating the rule of law and maritime security and cooperation; safeguarding of vulnerable populations through social protection efforts; environmental protection and climate change mitigation, among others.

Hernandez also stressed that President Aquino might have one or two bilateral meetings in APEC, but he refused to divulge the details since arrangements are yet to be finalized.


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