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Marcos arrives in Manila from ASEAN-Japan summit

President Ferdinand "Bongbong" Marcos Jr. arrived in Manila from Tokyo on Monday evening bringing home commitments to the Philippines as well as making commitments of his own for Japan and the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN).  

Malacanang released the arrival statement of the president shortly before he arrived in Manila from Tokyo, Japan where he attended the Commemorative Summit for the 50th Anniversary of ASEAN-Japan Relations.

 During his visit, Marcos met with Japanese prime minister Kishida Fumio and other ASEAN leaders.

“Throughout the summit and other related events, we discussed the future of ASEAN-Japan relations and emphasized the need for ASEAN to have an active role in maintaining peace, security and stability in the region,” Marcos said.

Marcos said the summit participants are advocating a rules-based Indo-Pacific that is free and open, guided by the shared fundamental principles as enshrined in the UN Charter and the Treaty of Amity and Cooperation in Southeast Asia.

“We highlighted the need to promote respect for sovereignty and territorial integrity, settlement of differences or disputes by peaceful means, and renunciation of the threat or use of force,” the president said.

Among Marcos’ notable accomplishments from the three-day trip are:
  • In the area of investments, Japanese investors directly reported over P169.7 billion of capital funneled into the Philippine economy. From these commitments, more that 9,700 new jobs have been generated.
  • Nine new letters of intent and MOUs were signed during the visit, valued at P14.5 billion pesos in investment, and over 15,750 additional jobs for Filipino workers.
  • An update to the letters of intent and MOUs signed in February 2023, together with those signed during this visit that total to P771.6 billion in pledges from Japanese investors. This is anticipated to create around 40,200 jobs.
  • He called attention to the worsening plight of the people of Myanmar and urged the proactive engagement of all stakeholders to alleviate the situation through the 5-Point Consensus, the United Nations mechanisms, as well as the AHA center.
  • Delivered a keynote speech during the Creative and Sustainable Economy through Innovation Event, organized by the Department of Trade and Industry, that showcased collaborative projects of Filipino fashion designers and Japanese textile manufacturers.
  • The Philippines concluded two Memoranda of Cooperation: one between the DENR and the Ministry of the Environment of Japan in the field of Environmental Protection. And another that strengthens and fosters cooperation between the coast guards of the Philippines and Japan.   
  • On the last day, Marcos attended the Asia Zero Emissions Community or AZEC Leaders meeting where the president apprised AZEC partner countries of the current Philippine initiatives towards promoting clean energy transition.

    “I highlighted our experience in promoting clean energy projects such as first wind farms in Southeast Asia in 2003 during my term as governor of Ilocos Norte. And I invited AZEC partners including Japan to invest in the Philippine renewable energy industry to achieve not only the intention of the AZEC but also the overall goal of the Paris Agreement,” Marcos said.
Upon his return to Manila, Marcos assured ASEAN and Japan, “that the Philippines will continue to shepherd ASEAN initiatives and projects not only to co-create a region of economic prosperity, but also an inclusive society that is ready for the future.”

“My Administration will see to it that our constructive engagements with ASEAN, our external partners, our stakeholders continue to best serve our national interest in as much as we promote the regional interest of Peace and prosperity for the wellbeing of our people. Without a doubt, this summit reaffirmed the robust and enduring character of ASEAN-Japan relations,” the president said.--RF, GMA Integrated News