Trade chief: PHL, Myanmar to boost investment ties via JCBC

MANILA-- Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) Secretary Ramon Lopez said the Philippines and Myanmar aim to increase investments, particularly in agriculture and food processing, through the Joint Commission on Bilateral Cooperation (JCBC).

The keen interest of the two ASEAN countries to boost economic ties is an offshoot of President Rodrigo Duterte's visit to Myanmar early this week, where he met with Myanmar President Htin Kyaw and State Counselor and Foreign Minister Aung San Suu Kyi.

"The meeting between President Duterte and Myanmar's top leaders touched on mutually beneficial strategies to increase trade and investment, to develop MSMEs (micro, small, and medium enterprises) and to provide agri-technical assistance," Lopez told reporters in a text message Wednesday.

Lopez is currently joining President Duterte's visit to Myanmar and Thailand.

"By and large, there was heightened interest to increase investment in the Philippine agriculture and food processing. All these initiatives will be under a Joint Commission on Bilateral Cooperation," he noted.

The JCBC is a comprehensive ministerial-level political mechanism for the governments of the Philippines and Myanmar to discuss areas of mutual interest.

During the visit of Philippine government officials to Myanmar, a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) was signed between Manila and Nay Pyi Taw for a food security and agricultural cooperation.

The MOU targets to make food accessible and affordable through the promotion of joint development ventures, conduct of research and development, transfer of technology, conduct of training, sourcing of raw materials for value adding, and capacity building, both at the technological and managerial levels.

Source: Philippines News Agency

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