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Only legit traders in Duterte delegations, please, Pimentel urges

/ 01:27 AM June 04, 2017
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Senate President Aquilino “Koko” Pimentel III. (File photo from the Philippine Daily Inquirer)

Senate President Aquilino “Koko” Pimentel III has called on Trade Secretary Ramon Lopez to ensure that only legitimate businessmen are made part of presidential delegations during foreign trips.

Pimentel stressed that prospective foreign investors should not only be protected from corruption but also from fraud and deceit.

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In a statement, the Senate president urged the DTI secretary to “accredit only honest-to-goodness Philippine businesses in the delegations abroad,” considering that foreign trips are meant to entice big-ticket investments and forge closer relations.

Pimentel was referring to Mr. Duterte’s assurance to potential Russian investors there will be no corruption in their dealings with his administration.

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Lopez and the business delegation as well as other government officials stayed behind in Moscow when the President had to rush back to the Philippines because of the Marawi City seige.

The visit to Russia resulted in the signing of 10 agreements on defense cooperation, tourism promotions, agricultural enhancement, transportation technology, international film and art festivals, trade and investments, and industry development.

Pimentel said Mr. Duterte vowed to pursue a drug-free country and a corrupt-free government and even offered to personally take care of complaints aired by Russian businessmen.

“We should also provide them with a fraud-free investment experience in the country,” he stressed.

Apart from securing deals in Russia, Mr. Duterte’s past visits has resulted in $15-billion pledge for infrastructure from the Chinese government and a $3-billion credit facility from the Bank of China.

Japan also offered $ 8.1-billion worth of loans and private investments.

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TAGS: Aquilino Pimentel III, Duterte delegations, Duterte foreign trips, Duterte's visit to Russia, Koko Pimentel, Ramon Lopez
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