MANILA, Philippines — President Rodrigo Duterte on Friday called for closer international cooperation to accelerate the Asia-Pacific region’s economic recovery from COVID-19 while addressing the challenges of climate change.
The President issued the call to world leaders during the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation’s Economic (APEC) leaders’ meeting held via video conference on Friday.
He pointed out that uneven recovery of countries from the COVID-19 pandemic can also be attributed to “structural and artificial contraints” in the global economy, apart from weak domestic systems or pre-pandemic economic fault lines.
“Closer infernational cooperation is needed to address these constraints and to ensure that all countries recover from this crisis,” he said.
Duterte also noted that APEC economies need improved risk management systems, better response and mitigation measures and stronger support mechanisms for vulnerable communities.
To achieve this, he called for the creation of an integrated system on vaccine passport validation and contact tracing, institutionalization of social protection for non-traditional forms of employment and promotion of transnational education and digital inclusion in APEC economies.
The President also reiterated his call for developed economies to fulfill their longstanding commitment to climate financing, technology transfer and capacity-building in the developing world to address the climate emergency the world is facing.
“Developing economies such as the Philippines contribute the least to climate change, but we are most vulnerable to its disastrous consequences,” he said.
“And the cost to transitioning to a green economy is too high for developing countries to afford. This is the simple truth,” he Duterte added.
The APEC economic leaders endorsed the Aotearoa Plan of Action, the Implementation Plan for Putrajaya Vision 2020, which highlights key imperatives on trade and investment, innovation and digitalization, and strong, balanced, secure, sustainable and inclusive growth.
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