Duterte prods Russia oil firm to invest in Philippines

PRESIDENT Rodrigo Duterte encouraged Russia's top oil producer, Rosneft Oil Company, to invest in the Philippines, MalacaƱang announced on Thursday, October 3.

Duterte made the proposal when he met with Rosneft Oil chief executive officer Igor Sechin at Four Seasons Hotel in Moscow on Wednesday, October 2, Presidential Spokesperson Salvador Panelo said in a statement.

Panelo said Duterte assured the officials of the Russian oil firm that their investments would be "safe in the Philippines" since corruption in government is not tolerated under his watch.

"The President invited Rosneft, the leader in the Russian oil sector, to invest in the Philippines, particularly with regard to oil and gas development," the Palace official said.

"We wish to add that the Chief Executive underscored that any agreement that will be executed or performed for such purpose shall undergo the proper domestic processes and comply with applicable laws and pertinent rules and regulations so as not to leave any room for corruption or irregularity," he added.

Present during the meeting were Secretaries Teodoro Locsin Jr. (Foreign Affairs), Salvador Medialdea (Executive), Carlos Dominguez III (Finance), Delfin Lorenzana (Defense) and Alfonso Cusi (Energy) as well as National Security Adviser Hermogenes Esperon Jr., Senator Christopher Lawrence Go, and Philippine Ambassador to the Russia Carlos Sorreta.

Rosneft vice presidents Zeljko Runje (Offshore Projects) and Didier Casimiro (Refining, Petrochemical, Commerce and Logistics), and Inter RAO chief executive officer Boris Kovalchuk also attended the meeting.

Duterte is currently in Rusia for a five-day official visit, his second after his May 2017 visit was cut short due to the Marawi armed conflict. (SunStar Philippines)


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