October 24, 2011
KOREA EXIMBANK OFFICE IN PHL TO HERALD STRONGER
Senator Edgardo J. Angara commended the Export-Import Bank of Korea for opening its first ever Philippine office, saying that it is a testament to its commitment to spur development in the country.
"Korea and the Philippines are founded on common democratic and spiritual values. We share the same passion for education and culture," said Angara. "We have forged a strong people-to-people bond over the last half a century, that is why the Koreans are special to us and we to the Koreans."
He continued, "About 60 years ago, Korea and the Philippines were on the same level of economic development. But Korea has since grown much faster than us. From being an aid recipient, Korea has now become an aid provider; from a developing country to a first world country.
"Hence, if there is a model that we ought to imitate, it is the industry, dedication, single-mindedness of the Koreans," stressed Angara, who led the ceremonial toast at the official launch of the bank on Oct. 13 at the Manila Peninsula.
The Export-Import Bank of Korea, or the Korea Eximbank, is their official export credit agency established in 1976.
It is responsible for the operation of two government funds: the Economic Development Cooperation Fund (EDCF), a Korean Official Development Assistance program which supports many projects in the Philippines, and the Inter-Korean Cooperation Fund (IKCF), an economic cooperation program with North Korea.
Angara thanked the Korea Eximbank, especially its President Yong Hwan Kim, for consistently supporting the Philippines' development programs particularly in the fields of agriculture, infrastructure and renewable energy.
"Now that you have an office here, we can only expect our relations to become stronger and more energized," he noted.
In fact in July, Korea announced that it increased its ceiling for development assistance to the Philippines from US$300 million in 2007-2009 to US$500 million for the next three years.
Angara, vice-chair of the Senate Committee on Finance, explained that this is but one of the many ways that South Korea has been helping the Philippines.
"Korea is the Philippines' genuine partner in development, and we must toast our mutual success and prosperity," said Angara.
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