100 Filipino businessmen may join Duterte's trip to Japan, Trade chief says
Some 100 Filipino businessmen may join President Rodrigo Duterte's trip to Japan this week, the top trade official told the Manila Shimbun.
"Target and limiting to around 100 only," said Trade Secretary Ramon Lopez in a text message when asked on the number of businessmen who could be part of the President's delegation to Tokyo during his official visit on October 25 to 27.
Lopez, who would be part of the official delegation, said that they have to limit the number of businessmen because of the "venue limits."
Part of the President's itinerary to Japan is to meet with the Japanese businessmen.
In an interview over state-run dzRB Radyo ng Bayan, Presidential Communications Office Secretary Martin Andanar expressed optimism that after Duterte's trip to Japan, more Japanese investors could consider pouring in their investments to the Philippines.
"With the trip on Tuesday in Japan, we are optimistic that the President could entice investors here to the Philippines," he said.
He also said Duterte, who will hold a bilateral meeting with Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe, is ready to explain his new foreign policy should he be asked by his counterpart.
"If that (foreign policy) will be asked, I'm sure that will be answered by the President and he can explain it to him," Andanar said.
A Japanese Embassy official earlier was asked if Japan was not worried with the recent pronouncements of Duterte against the United States, a Japan ally, while expressing intention to rely more with China.
Andanar, in another radio interview, said during the Japan trip, he and his Japanese counterpart will sign a "communications bilateral agreement" to improve state-run People's Television 4 and Radyo ng Bayan.
He noted that in the Aquino administration, former Presidential Communications Operations Office Secretary Herminio Coloma Jr. signed an agreement for the utilization of Japanese digital television.
He said he will coordinate with his counterpart for the possible "transfer to digital broadcasting" here in the Philippines.
In Japan, Duterte is expected to call on Emperor Akihito on October 27 before going back to Manila.
He is also set to visit a ship building company in Yokohama City where the remaining nine of the 10 multi-role vessels for the Philippine Coast Guard are being constructed.
The President is also expected to meet with the Filipino community on Tuesday upon his arrival in Tokyo.
Duterte's meeting with Abe in Japan will be his second after they held a bilateral meeting at the sidelines of a regional summit in Laos early September. During that meeting, Abe told Duterte that he was a "superstar" in his country. Celerina D. Monte/DMS