Aquino to leave on Friday for APEC Summit in Honolulu, Hawaii

PRESIDENT Benigno S. Aquino III will leave on Friday to attend the 19th Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) Leaders’ Week in Honolulu, Hawaii to be held from November 8 to 13.

President Aquino will be joined by a lean delegation led by Foreign Affairs Secretary Albert del Rosario, Trade and Industry Secretary Gregory Domingo and Finance Secretary Cesar Purisima.

During the APEC Leaders meeting, the President together with 20 other APEC leaders will discuss relevant issues, including growth and jobs, regulatory reform and competitiveness, and energy efficiency and security.

APEC 2011 which is hosted by the United States, is working towards the achievement of a “seamless regional economy.”

Prior to the APEC Leader’s Meeting, the President will be attending the APEC CEO Summit, which is scheduled on November 11 to 12.

The President will also participate in the APEC Business Advisory Council (ABAC) Dialogue with Leaders.

The dialogue gives ABAC members the opportunity to meet with APEC leaders to discuss the entire year’s ABAC work program and to raise issues of pressing concern to the business community.

ABAC Philippines is represented by Ayala Corporation chairman and chief executive officer (CEO) Jaime Augusto Zobel de Ayala, Jollibee Foods Corporation and CEO Tony Tan Caktiong and A. Magsaysay Inc. president and CEO Doris Magsaysay Ho.

The APEC Leaders’ Week starts on November 8 with the Concluding Senior Officials’ Meeting attended by the APEC Senior Officials from the 21 member economies. (PIA/PCOO)

Aquino shares MILF views says peace negotiators must be problem solvers

NEGOTIATORS of both the government and the Moro Islamic Liberation Front (MILF) must be problem solvers rather than trouble makers, President Benigno Aquino said echoing the statements made by MILF Chair Al Haj Murad Ebrahim.

“Hopefully, if I can get everybody’s attention to the statement that chairman Murad said himself, iyong negotiating panel have to be focused, that they are problem solvers rather than antagonists. And I am very hopeful that, that is indicative that there is an intense desire to achieve a just and comprehensive peace agreement,” the President said referring to Murad’s statements.

The President’s meeting with the MILF leader as well as other high ranking officials of the rebel group last week in Japan was aimed at showing the government’s sincerity in pursuing the ongoing peace talks and at the same time fast track the negotiations.

Malacanang assured this week that it would consider the views of all stakeholders in the peace talks with the MILF before both panels meet on August 22 to 24.

According to Secretary Teresita Deles of the Office of the Presidential Adviser on the Peace Process (OPAPP), the government panel will continue to work with different constituencies in preparation for the said meeting.

In a media briefing last week, government chief negotiator Marvic Leonen said both sides were expected to discuss the significant agenda in the upcoming formal talks this month.

At the same time, Leonen said there was no “secret deal” forged between the government and the MILF during the Japan meeting adding that the Aquino government will not commit the same mistakes made by the past administration. (PCOO)

Aquino and MILF Chair Murad agree: ‘We are not adversaries’

PRESIDENT Benigno S. Aquino III said that if he were to sum up in one sentence the outcome of his meeting with Moro Islamic Liberation Front Chair Al Haj Murad Ebrahim in a hotel in Tokyo, Japan last August 4, it would be that both sides agreed that they are not adversaries.

The President revealed this piece of information in an interview at the sidelines of the commemoration of the 110th Police Service Anniversary of the Philippine National Police on Monday in Quezon City. “If there is one central message that, to me, really stuck is the idea na “tayo ay hindi magka-tunggali (We are not adversaries),” the President said.

The President met with Ebrahim in hopes of ending the decades long war that has claimed the lives of tens of thousands of people.
He expressed confidence that through their meeting, a mutual “cooperation” between the two sides could be reached.

“I would like to think they will be cooperative as far as improving the situation, especially in the ARMM
(Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao) and Mindanao in particular,” the President said. (PCOO)

PNoy andam motabang alang sa kaugmaran sa Bohol

TAGBILARAN CITY, Aug. 2 (PIA)–ANDAM si Presidente Benigno Simeon Aquino III nga motabang alang sa gitinguha nga kaugmaran sa lalawigan sa Bohol isip bugti sa gihatag nga landslide nga kadaugan sa mga Bol-anon kaniya sa milabay nga piniliay.  Gipadangat sa mga Bol-anon sa Presidente ang mga nag-unang isyo sama sa dugay nang gipangandoy nga katukoran sa bag-ong tugpahanan sa lungsod sa Panglao, ang
water waste disposal ug ingon man usab ang solid waste ug uban sa mga proyekto sa imprastraktura sama sa kadalanan.

Ang katukoran sa bag-ong tugpahanan sa Panglao ang kanunay nga giduso nilang Gov. Edgar Chatto ug Kongresista Rene Relamapagos sa unang distrito nga mahatagan kini og suporta sa pamunoan ni Aquino taliwala sa nagka-problema nga naghuot nang tugpahanan sa Tagbilaran City Airport.  Sa gihimong project briefing sa gilaraw nga New Bohol Airport, ang Presidente nagkanayon nga ang maong P8.4 bilyon airport sa lungsod sa Panglao maoy nag-unang agenda sa unang pagduaw niya dinhi sa lalawigan sukad Hunyo sa miaging tuig.

Gipanglantawan sa kagamhanan nga ang gilaraw nga bag-ong tugpahanan makahatag og mas maayong serbisyo sa nagkadaghang bisita sa lalawigan.

Gawas sa pag-accommodate sa gagmay nga aircrafts sama sa Airbus 319 ug Airbus 320,  ang 2.5 kilometer runway maka-accommodate usab ug mas dagkong abyon sama sa Airbus 330.  Gikonsidera usab ang mga foreign regional flights sa paghuman sa maong tugpahanan.  Adunay kinatibuk-ang 2,291,802 ektarya nga luna ang nakuha na nga naglangkob sa upat ka barangay sa lungsod sa Panglao diin tukoran ang maong tugpahanan. Aduna pay gitinguhang isabot-sabot nga dugang 57.31 ektarya alang sa bag-ong pasilidad. (PIA-Bohol/ecb).

Aquino remains reluctant in amending the 1987 Constitution

PRESIDENT Benigno S. Aquino III hasn’t changed his position and remains reluctant in supporting any amendment to the 1987 Constitution saying the country can achieve development even without it. Executive Secretary Paquito Ochoa Jr. echoed this statement in an interview over dzMM on Tuesday.

Ochoa was reacting to the call of Senate President Juan Ponce Enrile to amend the present  Constitution particularly its economic provisions to attract more foreign investments.  “The Senate President was expressing his views lang naman. But as far as I know, the President  is not really considering any amendment in the Constitution. Kahit noong araw po, noong congressman siya and when he became a senator, and now that he is the President, he still believes that we can live with the Constitution,” Ochoa said.

Still, Ochoa explained that the President is open to proposals seeking the increase of foreign  ownership. The Constitution mandates 60-40 ownership, in favor of Filipino citizens.  “He is open to that, but his worry is that once you open up any amendment or any proposal
towards the amendment of the Constitution, it would be like Pandora’s box… na parang very difficult to control na, hindi ka makakasiguro talaga na iyon lang ang ma-aamend,” he noted.

In a separate media briefing in Malacanang on Tuesday, Presidential Spokesman Edwin Lacierda said that as far as the executive branch is concerned, it believes that the economic provisions in the Constitution can still pave the way for economic development.

“Other than amending the Constitution, we will provide a level playing field. We’ll make our rules more investment-friendly and most importantly, we have taken away the graft-ridden process of bidding in so far as government transactions are concerned,” Lacierda said.
The government has also plugged the leakages in tax and revenue collections, he said, adding that the administration believes it can get the growth it wants without having to amend the Constitution. (PCOO)