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Duterte bats for non-discriminatory vaccination certificate at ASEM

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President Rodrigo Duterte on Friday urged members of the Asia-Europe Meeting (ASEM) Summit to work on the use of a vaccination cards that are internationally-recognized to allow safe and seamless travels of Filipinos across borders.

Duterte underscored the need for a framework on vaccine certificate
recognition that is "scientific, non-discriminatory and WHO-compliant to facilitate safe cross-border travel."

“How can countries—that cornered vaccines early on—now discriminate against those who had to scrounge for the limited doses left at the start of the pandemic?" he said in message delivered virtually before summit members.

"All the recognized vaccines work. Geopolitics should not pick and choose,” he added.

Duterte has called for focus on every country's preparedness and resiliency amid COVID-19 pandemic, saying “it will not be the last pandemic.”

“Even if we do all these, a resilient future will be out of reach if we do not take drastic actions,” he said

Apart from COVID-19 pandemic, Duterte said the worsening effects of climate change reversed the gains in economic growth and poverty reduction.

He urged for enhanced multilateral actions to increase the economic exchanges and people mobility in order to accelerate the inclusive recovery.

Duterte also pushed for the resumption of negotiations on a Free Trade Agreement with the European Union and renewed support for a fair and open trading system under the World Trade Organization.

Reiterating the Philippines’ call for climate justice, he said, “world’s transition to clean energy cannot be at the expense of the developing world’s growth and prosperity. This simply is not right.”

“This is a problem 200 years in the making – from which some countries benefited more than others. Now we are all in this crisis – past the point of no return,” he added.

The 13th ASEM meeting has adopted three outcome documents which include the ASEM13 Chair’s Statement, Phnom Penh Statement on the Post-COVID-19 Socio[1]Economic Recovery, and Way Forward on ASEM Connectivity.

The ASEM summit was held from November 25 to 26.—LDF, GMA News

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