ASIDE from looking for potential business opportunities, foreign ambassadors attending the 5th Davao Investment Conference (Davao Icon) are also in the city to observe the peace and security situation of Davao.
Among the foreign ambassadors attending the conference are Ambassador Franz Jessen of the European Union, Ambassador Jozsef Bencze of Hungary, Ambassador Saskia de Lang of Netherlands, Ambassador Harald Fries of Sweden, Ambassador Igor Anatolyevich Khovaev of Russia, Ambassador Gerard Wei Hong Ho of Singapore, and Ambassador Gerardo Lozano of Mexico.
Davao City Chamber of Commerce and Industry, Inc. (DCCCII) president Arturo Milan said in a press conference Thursday, June 20, that the presence of the diplomats indicate the interest to see what Davao City really is, especially on its peace and security aspect.
"In terms of interest, it is not only business, there is also some political because they used to issue negative travel advisories which kept on hampering Europeans to visit to Mindanao," Milan said.
He said those countries that often give negative travel advisories to Mindanao are being prioritized in their trade missions.
"The way I look at it, they are observing. They are observing the situation of security in Mindanao especially that we are still in martial law, and they are here to see what Davao really is," he said.
"Their presence is an indication that they are interested in the city.
And once they see Davao, it will change the misconceptions on safety and security," he added.
Meanwhile, Milan said 12 ambassadors were invited to the Davao Icon 2019 but only seven were able to attend. It is also the first time that these diplomats joined the event.
While in Davao, the European ambassadors and diplomats are expected to pay a courtesy meeting on Davao Mayor Sara Duterte and to discuss with business executives from Southern Mindanao Business Council.