Ambassador Lopez Shares Good News about the Philippines with Japan National Press Club

TOKYO — “Visit the Philippines and see a country greatly transformed and energized”, proudly proclaimed Philippine Ambassador to Japan Manuel M. Lopez as he addressed the prestigious Japan National Press Club (JNPC) last July 31.
Ambassador Lopez was invited to appear before Japan’s premier press association for an “on-the-record press conference”. The Ambassador took the occasion to discuss positive political and economic developments in the Philippines, the rise of the Philippines-Japan Strategic Partnership, as well as regional issues of mutual import to the Philippines and Japan.

Ambassador Lopez addresses full-house at the JNPC Headquarters

The Ambassador outlined the economic gains attained by the Philippines on the back of the Aquino Administration’s “good governance is good economics” thrust, which has made economists regard the country as a one of the world’s economic bright spots. Citing rising international and domestic confidence in the country, investment-grade credit ratings upgrades awarded by top global ratings firms, and glowing indicators, Ambassador Lopez highlighted the sustainability of Philippine growth and its long-term positive growth prospects.
The Ambassador credited Japan for helping buttress the Philippines’ growth in a broad and substantial fashion, through its extensive economic engagement with the country. He cited statistics showing Japan to be the Philippines’ top trade partner, export partner, and source of ODA, and third in terms of FDI and tourist arrivals. Ambassador Lopez also thanked Japan for its extensive support for peace and development in Mindanao, as well as the recovery of disaster-hit areas, most recently communities affected by Typhoon Haiyan in Central Philippines.

Ambassador Lopez fields a question at his JNPC Press Conference. Beside him is JNPC Secretary General Shuichi Habu, the Yomiuri Shimbun’s Manila Bureau correspondent in the late 1980s.

The Ambassador also provided an overview of Philippine positions on key regional issues, including developments in the West Philippine Sea and the Philippines’ initiation of arbitral proceedings to secure an international law-based lasting resolution to disputes in the area.

The guest book entry of President Corazon C. Aquino during her appearance before the JNPC, 1986

Ambassador Lopez joins a world leaders, policymakers, VIPs and foreign dignitaries and Ambassadors before Japan’s largest and most prestigious press organization. The JNPC welcomes about 200 speakers annually. Previous speakers from the Philippines include President Corazon C. Aquino (1986) and other Philippine Presidents and Cabinet Secretaries. END

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