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PIA Press Release

President Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo's arrival statement from her official visit to Malaysia

Manila, September 1, 2007

It was an honor for the Philippines to witness the celebration of the Golden or 50th Anniversary of Malaysia's Merdeka or Independence Day.

In the Malaysian capital, we joined other heads of state and government of countries with long years of diplomatic relations with Malaysia.

I personally thanked Prime Minister Dato' Seri Abdullah Badawi and other Malaysian government officials for their support in the Exploratory Talks between the Government of the Republic of the Philippines (GRP) and the Moro Islamic Liberation Front (MILF) and for the extension of the International Monitoring Team's tour of duty in the Philippines.

When I left Manila on Thursday afternoon, I brought with me very good news for our fellow Filipinos in Malaysia -- the latest indicators showing that the Philippine economy registered its highest growth rate of 7.3 percent in two decades during the first half of this year.

Our kababayans in Malaysia expressed optimism that soon they can come home to a better country and a brighter future.

The statistics from our National Statistical Coordination Board (NSCB) shows that our economic roadmap is unfolding as it should, and right on schedule.

From Third World to First World, this is the only journey worth taking.

I call on our people and their representatives in Congress to work for progress and unite for peace, so that finally we can leave the chains of poverty and political instability behind us.

Malaysia and some of our other neighbors have shown us that this can be done. Our Gross Domestic Product (GDP) growth shows that we can prosper, and that in fact, we are on our way to better times, as long as we stay on course and fight poverty as Team Philippines. (OPS) [top]

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