PHL thanks Canada over 'country of focus' tag

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Saturday, June 28, 2014

THE Department of Foreign Affairs (DFA) welcomed the announcement from the Canadian government designating the Philippines as a “Country of Focus”.

In a statement, the DFA said it is welcome news that the Philippines is now considered by Canada as a priority recipient of development assistance under its international development assistance program.

“The announcement further illuminates the excellent bilateral relations between the Philippines and Canada, which is bolstered by strong people-to-people linkages, and highlights a strong affinity for principles and pursuits to promote prosperity and productivity, as well as freedom, peace, justice, human rights, gender empowerment, security, and the rule of law across the globe,” said the DFA.

DFA said the special designation as a Country of Focus also carries the promise of a greater two-way bilateral trade and investment flows between the Philippines and Canada.

The DFA said it also manifests the two’s alignment in foreign policy, extending to various security, economic, socio-cultural and people-to-people interests.

Prior to the declaration, the DFA pointed that Canada is not a stranger to Filipinos when it comes to helping the latter.

It stressed that the Filipino people will always remember how Canada came to the aid those affected by Typhoon Yolanda (Haiyan), and how the federal government facilitated a special typhoon matching fund that has grown to over CAD$170 million.

On Friday, the Foreign Affairs, Trade and Development Canada said the Philippines is one of several countries added to the list of development countries of focus.

Aside from the Philippines, new countries added to the list of development countries of focus this year include Burma, Mongolia, Burkina Faso, Benin, the Democratic Republic of Congo, and Jordan.

The countries were chosen based on their real needs, their capacity to benefit from aid, and their alignment with Canadian foreign policy priorities. (HDT/Sunnex)

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