'Productive meeting' seen among Apec leaders

PRESIDENT Rodrigo Duterte will undoubtedly have a "fruitful and productive" meeting with fellow Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (Apec) leaders in Papua New Guinea, Malacañang on Friday, November 16.

Presidential Spokesperson Salvador Panelo made the remark, as Duterte arrived in Port Moresby, Papua New Guinea to join 20 other leaders and representatives of member economies for the two-day Apec summit.

"The Palace expects President Rodrigo Roa Duterte to have a fruitful and productive visit to Papua New Guinea, the host of this year’s 19th Asia Pacific Economic Cooperation (Apec) Summit," Panelo said in a statement.

Duterte is scheduled to attend the dialogue with prominent business leaders during the Apec Business Advisory Council meeting.

The President is also slated to have discussions with Pacific Islands leaders in a forum.

Panelo said the Apec forum would help Duterte convey his support for mechanisms that would enable Filipino entrepreneurs, especially those running the micro, small and medium enterprises (MSMEs), to promote their products and services overseas.

"The President is set to join a dialogue before prominent business leaders during the summit of chief executive officers of the Apec Business Advisory Council or ABAC and meet with leaders of the Pacific Islands Forum," the Palace official said.

"The Apec Forum is likewise a good opportunity for the President to express his support for mechanisms that will enable our MSMEs to take advantage of digital and online platforms to benefit their enterprises and to bring their products and services overseas," he added.

Apec, comprised of 21 member economies, has served as an incubator for new ideas and concepts in furthering inclusive growth and economic development in the region.

With regard to Duterte's possible bilateral meetings with other Apec leaders, the Department of Foreign Affairs is still finalizing the "best schedule and arrangements," Panelo said.

"As to possible bilateral meetings with our leaders and heads of economies, officials of the Department of Foreign Affairs are still working, coordinating and finalizing with their counterparts on the best schedule and arrangements," he said. (SunStar Philippines)


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