Duterte, King of Jordan oversee labor, defense, investment deal signings

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PRESIDENT Rodrigo R. Duterte and King Abdullah II of Jordan on Thursday witnessed the signing of five agreements covering labor, defense and investment, among others.

The agreements were memoranda of understanding (MoUs) on political consultations, defense cooperation, labor cooperation, investment, and a memorandum of agreement (MoA) between the Jordan Maritime Commission and the Maritime Industry Authority of the Philippines concerning the recognition of certificates under the Terms of the 1978 STCW (Standards of Training Certification and Watch-keeping for Seafarers) Convention.

Also on Thursday, business agreements valued at “about $10 million” were set to be signed between companies from both countries, according to Trade Secretary Ramon M. Lopez.

Mr. Duterte arrived in Jordan on Sept. 5, for a three-day official visit.

Mr. Duterte was scheduled to attend a business forum at the Intercontinental Hotel in Amman yesterday, where he was expected to witness the signing of agreements between private firms from the Philippines and Jordan.

In a text message to reporters, Mr. Lopez said the deals are expected to generate “over 200 jobs” for Filipinos.

In an interview with Radio Television Malacañang (RTVM), Philippine Ambassador to Jordan Akmad Atlah Sakkam said: “The visit initiates an opening for our businessmen. And for Jordan also.”

He added that one of the possible opportunities that could be explored is the Halal industry. “It’s a multi-billion-dollar industry that our businessmen should exploit, so information must flow harmoniously,” he said.

In a statement, the Palace said: “Jordanian businesses could look into the agricultural products of the Philippines such as bananas and pineapples.”

Special Assistant to the President Christopher Lawrence T. Go also confirmed that Jordan has donated two Bell Cobra attack helicopters to the Philippines. — Arjay L. Balinbin