Malacañan: Pres. Duterte has yet to decide on Europe visit

Malacañan: Pres. Duterte has yet to decide on Europe visit

Is the European Union the next foreign trip for President Rodrigo Duterte?

Early this week European Union Ambassador to the Philippines Franz Jessen told the media in a press conference in the weekly Kapihan sa Manila Bay that the European Union has formally invited President Rodrigo Roa Duterte to attend the 12th Asia-Europe Meeting (ASEM12) in Brussels, Belgium in October.

The President coming home from his successful trip in India, bringing home US1.25 Billion in investment pledges, it was all but natural to ask him if his next trip would be to the EU.
Pres. Duterte ( file photo)(photo credit to owner)


Presidential spokesperson Harry Roque, in answering the question said, that the President will “follow his own guidelines” in deciding whether to accept the invitation or not.

“There was an invitation but the guidelines will be… we need to be very clear on what benefits the Philippines will get from such a visit. It must not be too expensive,” Roque said in a news conference in India.

“Pursuant to those guidelines, the President will make a decision.”

Should the President accept the invitation, Jessen said he hopes Duterte's visit to Europe may give the chief executive a "more positive understanding of the European Union."

The president in his public speeches had slammed the EU for its “interference” in a purely internal matter to the Philippines, this is with respect as to how the government authorities is implementing its anti-drug campaign.

The government has repeatedly explained the Philippine situation and has clarified that it does not sanction summary killings or allow police abuses in the conduct of its anti-drug campaign.

President Duterte has visited several countries since he assumed the presidency and each time he goes home , he has gotten billions of dollars of aid and trade pledges.

The EU , is a vital trading partner of the Philippines, which recently has retained its duty-free privileges for most of the Philippines’ exports to EU.  *

Recently the Philippines formally rejected atleast 6.1 Million euros worth of aid , as confirmed by Jessen.

Roque, assured the public that the rejection of such aid will not affect the delivery of services to the public.

“We are doing it as a country. We are providing for the needs of our people. We now have outstanding economic growth and this will enable us to give what our people will need,” Roque said.
Report from ABS-CBN


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