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PHL have other sources of financing other than EU -- Palace

MANILA, May 18 -- Malacañang on Thursday said the Philippines has other sources of finance other than from the European Union (EU) and can manage without the ‘unacceptable’ grant coming from the bloc.

In a Palace briefing, Presidential Spokesperson Ernesto Abella said that the country can compensate whatever that is lost from a rejected EU grant as he highlighted the efforts of President Rodrigo Duterte in amassing a great amount of goodwill from major countries in the past few months.

“You know, there are other sources of actual finance. As you can very well see from the past achievements of the President, he has brought in an enormous amount -- huge slabs of bacon,” Abella said.

His statement came in the heels of the Philippine government’s rejection of around USD 280 million development aid from EU due to certain preconditions that the administration said would enable the bloc to interfere with the country’s internal affairs.

In declining the grant offer, Abella said the Philippines has the prerogative to accept or decline any foreign aid or loan especially if it impinges on our independence as a sovereign nation.

“The Philippines reserves the right to accept loans and grants that help attain its objectives of promoting economic development inclusiveness and reducing poverty, attaining peace within its borders and with its neighbors, and fostering a law-abiding society,” he said.

“It also reserves the right to respectfully decline offers that do not achieve these goals and offers that allow foreigners to interfere with the conduct of its internal affairs,” Abella said.

The rejection led some sectors to ask if the country can stand without the donations and grants coming from EU.

“You’ve seen the performance of the President with the past 10 months. You’ve seen the economic growth. You know, the Philippines is growing by leaps and bounds. Right now, the Philippines is the second fastest growing country in Asia,” Abella pointed out.

In his last visit to China alone, on the occasion of the One Belt, One Road forum, Duterte has brought home around PHP350 billion in infrastructure pledges.

This is on top of another PHP50 million in pledges for the country’s military.

The President has also made previous trips to Japan and the rest of the ASEAN and is slated to go to Russia in the last week of May for a state visit.

In the meantime, the Philippine economy was cited by the International Monetary Fund as the fastest growing economy in the region over the next two years, from 2017 to 2018.

Credit rating agencies Standard and Poor’s and Fitch Ratings have maintained the country's investment credit rating with a positive outlook, amid indications of continued economic growth and manageable debt levels.

Abella said that while the Duterte administration does not disrespect the foreign aid that the Philippines have received, particularly from EU, Filipinos should begin trusting in themselves.

“We’re not disrespecting the aid that we’ve received but definitely our track record shows that we’re growing by leaps and bounds,” he said.

“So I think we need to gain a certain confidence in ourselves. And that this is exactly the kind of mentality I think that the President wants the Filipinos to avoid: a mendicant attitude,” Abella said. (Cielito M. Reganit/PNA)

PHL have other sources of financing other than EU -- Palace PHL have other sources of financing other than EU -- Palace Reviewed by AsianPolicy.Press on 2:19:00 AM Rating: 5

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