|EP Members Visit PH|
15 February 2013 - Seven Members of the European Parliament’s (EP) delegation for Relations of Southeast Asia and ASEAN (DASE) called on Secretary del Rosario this morning, February 15.
The delegation, headed by EP Chair Werner Langen, is on a five-day visit to the Philippines to see first-hand the economic and social developments in the country.
Dr. Langen lauded the Aquino Administration’s advocacy on good governance and the strong economic situation, and endorsed the President’s fight against corruption, stating that “No corruption will lead to better performance of the economy.”
The European parliamentarians also expressed support for the Philippines’ move to use peaceful and rules-based methods of solving its maritime disputes with its neighbors, particularly the recent decision of the Philippines to submit to the nine-dash claim of China before an arbitral tribunal. They agreed with Secretary del Rosario that the legal track provides for a stable, non-violent and durable solution to the issue.
The Delegation met with House Speaker Belmonte, Senator Angara, Bangko Sentral Governor Amando Tetangco and the Secretaries of Justice, Trade and Industry, and Labor, the Presidential Adviser for the Peace Process, the head of the Commission on Human Rights (CHR), as well as the European Chamber of Commerce and civil society representatives earlier in the week. They were in Cotabato City from February 13 to 14 to visit European Union (EU)-funded projects in the area. The Delegation reported that they were particularly “thrilled” to have visited Camp Darapanan the day after the historic visit of President Aquino last February 11.
DASE serves as the conduit of relations between ASEAN member countries and the European Parliament. Part of DASE’s responsibilities is to regularly visit ASEAN member countries and to report the Delegation’s observations and recommendations to the Parliament. DASE’s previous visits to the Philippines were on November 3 to 5, 2010 and on November 18 to 23, 2007.
The EU is the fourth biggest aid donor of the Philippines.
It was also one of the first to send its sympathies and assistance worth Php160 million in the wake of Typhoon Pablo.
The EU leads the Rehabilitation and Development component of the Mindanao Peace Process International Monitoring Team and supports the Philippines’ call for a peaceful resolution of the West Philippine Sea issue. END