Duterte's APEC 2016 message: We are open for business

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Metro Manila (CNN Philippines) — President Rodrigo Duterte's message at the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) will be clear: The Philippines is open for business.

Duterte detailed his agenda at the two-day economic meeting of world leaders before leaving for Peru.

"We will do everything to make sure that businesses — particularly our MSMEs (micro-small and medium enterprises) — will thrive and flourish," the president said in a speech at the Davao International Airport on Thursday.

He added the summit will help the country pursue an independent foreign policy.

Duterte said the country must build stronger economic ties with South America, a region which he said shares a common heritage with the Philippines.

He said he will highlight government support, as well as anti-corruption and -criminality efforts to strengthen the national economy.

Apart from this, the president said he will discuss his 10-point Socio-Economic Program, "particularly improvements in doing business through more efficient and responsive governance, massive investments in new infrastructure, a new focus on rural development, and increased investments in human capital."

 

The 24th annual APEC summit has for its theme, "Quality Growth and Human Capital Development: Foundation for Sustainable Growth in the Asia-Pacific." It will happen on November 19-20.

World leaders expected to attend the APEC Summit include U.S. President Barack Obama, Chinese President Xi Jinping, Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau, Mexican President Enrique Peña Nieto, Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe, Indonesian President Joko Widodo, and newly-elected Peruvian President Pedro Pablo Kuczynski.

President Duterte will leave Peru in the evening of November 20. The Department of Foreign Affairs says his flight is expected to reach Davao near midnight of November 23.

He will pass through Auckland, New Zealand instead of the usual route through the U.S.

 

APEC  is a regional economic forum established in 1989 to leverage the growing interdependence of the Asia-Pacific.

Its member economies are Australia, Brunei Darussalam, Canada, Chile, People's Republic of China, Hong Kong, China, Indonesia, Japan, Malaysia, Mexico, New Zealand, Papua New Guinea, Peru, the Philippines, Russia, Singapore, Korea, Chinese Taipei, Thailand, the United States and Vietnam.

CNN Philippines' stringer Ben Tesiorna contributed to this report.