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Ayala Group's Fernando Zobel de Ayala, other top Filipino Bizmen join President Duterte in China

In what is described as the biggest Philippine business delegation ever, Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte flew to China with over 500 businessmen last week.
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Cabinet Secretaries Martin Andanar, Mark Villar, Mon Lopez and business tycoon Fernando Zobel de Ayala sharing a car ride in Beijing. Photo courtesy of The Philippine Star, www.philstar.com. PTPA Raelyn Luchansky
According to reports, the original 100 entourage swell to over 500 members.
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Secretary Leoncio Evasco and Oishi boss Carlos Chan at the welcoming ceremony. Photo courtesy of The Philippine Star, www.philstar.com. PTPA Raelyn Luchansky
The list of top business people wanting to be part of Duterte’s fence-mending diplomatic mission to the world’s largest market of 1.4 billion people and also the second largest economy, this roster kept on growing.
Many media erroneously reported “at least 200” people joined the business delegation, it was actually a record-breaking 500 plus.

Among the business leaders on the list included SM Group’s Hans Sy and Jeffrey Lim, Ayala Group’s Fernando Zobel de Ayala with top executives Ayala Land CEO Bobby Dy and Globe Telecom president Ernest Cu, ICTSI boss Enrique “Ricky” Razon, Jr. and his nephew SVP Christian R. Gonzales, Philippine Airlines boss Lucio C. Tan and his son Michael “Mike” Tan (honorary chairman of Anvil Business Club which had several delegates on this trip), Megaworld/Emperador founder Andrew Tan and his son SVP Kevin Tan, San Miguel Corp. boss Ramon Ang, Zesto/RC Cola boss Alfredo “Fred” Yao, presidential adviser Joey Concepcion of RFM and GoNegosyo, Dr. Francis Chua and George Barcelon of PCCI, Sabin Aboitiz, JG Summit’s Lance Gokongwei and his cousin Robinsons Land president Frederick Go, Filinvest Group leaders Josephine Gotianun Yap and husband Joseph Yap, Carlos Chan of Oishi/Liwayway, realty tycoon Manny Villar and his son DPWH Secretary Mark Villar, Angel Ngu and Jimmy Tang of the FFCCCII, Dr. James Dy of Chinese General Hospital, Jollibee Group boss Tony Tan Caktiong who was always with his business partner DoubleDragons’ Edgar “Injap” Sia, FFCCCII vice-president Domingo Yap and his son Congressman Arthur Yap (who I heard might be appointed to a top cabinet post), Solid Group/MyPhone’s Joseph Lim (whose family years ago once hosted now China President Xi Jinping in Manila when he was still a young government official), STI boss Eusebio “Yosi” Tanco, Cavitex Holdings CEO Luis Juan Virata and son VP Leonides Virata (both of whom speak fluent Mandarin), etc.

A big group of Davao tycoons joined this state visit, which included two businessmen who are reportedly longtime friends of President Duterte, mall tycoon James Gaisano and Davao Farm Corp. boss Samuel “Sammy” Uy (who was given special mention in Duterte’s Oct. 20 speech before businessmen, that he used to watch betamax movies for free at Uy’s home).

On this trip, I witnessed the Philippines’ tycoons like Sabin Aboitiz, Lance Gokongwei, Tony Tan Caktiong, Injap Sia and others just standing throughout the SRO (standing room only) and much-applauded speech of President Duterte on Oct. 19 at the Grand Hyatt Hotel Beijing before the Filipino community.
International media, such as Reuters, reported: “Red carpet welcome… China has pulled out all the stops to welcome Duterte, including a marching band complete with baton-twirling band master at his official greeting ceremony outside the Great Hall of the People, which is not extended to most leaders.”

Bloomberg reported on the last day of Duterte’s state visit: “Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte will bring home $24 billion worth of funding and investment pledges from his four-day visit to China as both nations agreed to resume talks and explore areas of cooperation in the South China Sea.”

New York Times reported: “The Philippines’ trade secretary, Ramon Lopez, said that China had agreed to spend $15 billion on projects to help achieve the biggest infrastructure boom in the Philippines since the authoritarian rule of President Ferdinand Marcos.”

President Rody Duterte said: “Even as we arrived in Beijing close to winter, this is the springtime of our relationship… China has been a friend of the Philippines and the roots of our bonds are very deep and not easily severed.”

Ayala Group's Fernando Zobel de Ayala, other top Filipino Bizmen join President Duterte in China Ayala Group's Fernando Zobel de Ayala, other top Filipino Bizmen join President Duterte in China Reviewed by Raelyn Luchansky on 6:02:00 AM Rating: 5

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