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PIA Press Release

PGMA ends weeklong official foreign trip, lists gains

Manila (28 November) -- Malacanang said that President Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo's appeal to rich nations to help poor and developing countries cope with the current global financial debacle has elicited the sympathy and support of world leaders.

The President aired her appeal during last week's 16th Asia-Pacific Leaders Summit held in Lima, Peru.

Press Secretary Jesus Dureza, in a press statement, said the President returns to Manila from the APEC summit confident that her strong advocacy on behalf of less-developed economies in the "midst of present-day financial challenges finds resonance amongst world leaders."

The President is scheduled to arrive tonight from Lima via Los Angeles.

At both the Lima APEC summit and the 7th Asia-Europe Meeting (ASEM) held in Beijing last Sept. 24-27, the President led the charge for wealthy industrialized countries to come to the aid of the struggling and vulnerable economies caught in the web of the most crippling global financial crisis in years.

"We count on the G-7 members of ASEM to consider the emerging economies in the bold actions and extraordinary measures that they plan to undertake to ease the crisis in the global financial system," she said at the Beijing summit.

G-7 refers to the group of seven industrialized countries: United States, United Kingdom, Germany, France, Canada, Japan and Italy.

In her address at Lima's Universidad San Ignacio de Loyola, where she was conferred an honorary doctorate degree last Sunday, President Arroyo called on the "countries of the G-20 to include the developing economies in the brave action of extending help that they intend to take to abate the problem in the global financial order."

Dureza said that during the discussions among the APEC leaders, the President "brought to the table" the concerns of the "poor and vulnerable, reminding everybody that we should not forget that it's the poor eventually who will bear the brunt (of the economic crunch), and so any solution should take the poor and the vulnerable into account."

He said that the President's initiative for the resumption of the stalled Doha Round of the World Trade Organization's (WTO) talks is expected to bear fruit soon.

He added that her meetings with President Alvaro Uribe and other and political and business leaders of Colombia are expected to strengthen Philippine-Colombia relations, considering that the two countries share similar challenges and solutions.

During her stopover in Los Angeles en route to Manila, the President met with the leaders of the Filipino-American community, and with executives of Ingram Micro, a leading player in the technology value chain.

Ingram Micro officials presented to the President their company's business expansion plan in the Philippines, Dureza said.

She also met with Los Angeles Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa who "extolled the President as a vibrant leader of Filipinos who is held in high esteem by Filipino immigrants in his city."

Los Angeles is home to about one million Filipinos.

The President was also "cited by the Filipino veterans in California for her strong support for their cause as they continue campaigning for equitable recognition and benefits from the American government," Dureza said. (PIA-MMIO) [top]

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