Aquino arrives home with $2.5-B investments

Posted at 06/10/2012 12:26 PM | Updated as of 06/10/2012 7:14 PM

MANILA, Philippines - President Benigno Aquino III has arrived home from his seven-day trip, armed with at least $2.5 billion worth of investments from the United Kingdom and the United States.

In London, Aquino met with various companies such as Glencore and Royal Dutch Shell, which are ready to invest in the country.

He said at least $1.5 billion in investments are expected to flow into our economy.

Over in the US, the president also met with businessmen who have pledged at least P1 billion dollars in investments.

"Sa kabuuan po, ang halaga ng kalakal na papasok mula sa mga kumpanyang nakapulong natin, sa Britanya at sa Amerika: Hindi bababa sa dalawa't kalahating bilyong dolyar, o humigit-kumulang 100 billion pesos. Trabaho po ang katumbas ng mga numerong ito; trabahong magdadala ng pagkain sa mesa ng Pilipino."

Aquino also announced the Philippines would no longer need to pay its $23 million in debts to the US.

“Benepisyaryo rin po tayo ng isang debt for nature swap; hindi na raw po natin kailangang bayaran ang 23 million dollars na utang, basta't mapupunta sa pagtatanim ng mga bagong puno ang perang ito,” he said.

He also added that the US has affirmed the importance of the Philippines as its ally and vowed to continue helping the country beef up its maritime capabilities.

"Ipinahayag po ni Secretary of State Hillary Clinton ang suporta nilang ibibigay sa pagtatayo ng ating Coast Watch, na malayo ang mararating upang mabantayan ang ating mga baybayin. Inanunsyo rin ni Secretary Clinton na magkakaroon ng dagdag na Peace Corps volunteers na idedestino sa ating bansa."

Aquino also said the Philippines will receive $30 million under the “Partnership for Growth” program, which supports projects to address poverty. - ANC