Official Week in Review: May 8 – May 15, 1983

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May 8—

PRESIDENT MARCOS said that Japanese Prime Minister Yasuhiro Nakasone extended a package of economic and cultural assistance amounting to $320.5 million in loans and grants to the Philippines and assured more access for RP products in the Japanese market.

The President disclosed the highlights of his two-hour talk with Nakasone, the President said that the personal diplomacy undertaken by the Japanese Prime Minister is the start of a new era of rationality in the relationships between the ASEAN countries and Japan to preserve security and hasten economic development in the region.

Broken down, the economic assistance to the Philippines includes a $280-million soft loan under the Overseas Economic Cooperation Fund to finance 10 impact projects and a $30 to $40 million outright grant in lieu of the request for funding for the cooper industry.

Nakasone also pledged to give preference to the study of the request for financial support in the construction of the P1.2 billion San Roque multipurpose dam in Pangasinan.

The President also said that he and Nakasone approved an air agreement allowing the Philippine Airlines to fly to the United States via TOKYO three times a week, subject to further study “as we move along” in the spirit of mutual reciprocity and friendship.

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May 9—

PRESIDENT MARCOS was contented with the assurance of Prime Minister Yasuhiro Nakasone that Japan has no intention of becoming a major military power.

This assurance was given by the Japanese Prime Minister before his departure that Japan has no intention of amending the Japanese Constitution, which renounces war as a national policy.

Assessing the visit of Nakasone, the President said that he was happy about the visit, noting the package of economic and cultural assistance in loans and grants amounting to $320.5 million which the Japanese government has extended to the Philippines.

But the President underscored the need for Japan to help in the development of primary industries in Southeast Asia while holding on to high technology industries to rationalize their relationship.

The two leaders hugged each other before the Prime Minister boarded a special Japan Air Lines plane which will take him to Kuala Lumpur, the fifth stop in his tour of the ASEAN region and the Sultanate of Brunei.

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The First Lady, Imelda R. Marcos, left at 3:30 p.m. yesterday for the United States to confer with business and industry leaders.

Mrs. Marcos will also follow up the implementation of the economic agreements reached with the US government during the September state visit of President Marcos.

The First Lady is also expected to meet with Dr. Armand Hammer, chairman of Occidental Petroleum, who had been here as guest of the First Couple last December, Occidental Petroleum had acquired ownership of Cities Service, an oil explorer in the Philippines.

Mrs. Marcos was seen off at the Manila International Airport by the President, children Imee, Ferdinand Jr. and Irene, friends and ranking government officials.

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May 10—

PRESIDENT MARCOS rejected a proposal of private business and financial leaders to postpone the government’s remaining industrial projects because of current economic difficulties.

Out of the 11 industrial projects the government wanted to undertake nine are in various stages of implementation, construction or negotiation.

The industrial projects are: integrated steel, cooper smelter, fertilizer plant, coconut rationalization, integrated pulp and paper, diesel engine manufacturing, heavy engineering, cement industry expansion and alcogas program.

For economic reasons, the government has dropped the aluminum smelter and petrochemical projects.

Instead of pushing through with the remaining projects, the businessmen said, funds should be reallocated to “directly productive sectors.”

In rejecting the proposal to shelve the remaining projects the President explained that the funding for these projects does not come from the government entirely but that the bulk conies from the supplier’s credit.

Supplier’s credit, he explained, is money advanced by parties selling equipment and all the technology for these industries so that there is no money coming out of our own pocket.

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May 11—

PRESIDENT MARCOS has ordered high priority consideration of Canada’s proposal for a railway linking Batangas with Metro Manila and Bulacan and offers from foreign groups for the transportation of coal to cement pants in the metropolis.

The President has directed the ministries of energy and transportation and communications to rush their studies on the Canadian proposal as well as on an Australian alternative on the construction of a slurry pipeline and similar offers from Japanese and Australian group.

He said the government- will decide soon which financial package is most acceptable and best suited to Philippine requirements.

The proposed railway between Batangas City, where coal piers are being completed, and Metro Manila was discussed during the visit of Canadian Prime Minister Pierre Eliott Trudeau and was reiterated by Canadian

Minister of State for International Trade Relations Gerald Regan during a call Monday on President Marcos.

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President Marcos assured the private and financial sectors will get all the credit they need “as soon as everything settles down.”

Citing statistics, the President said that the government gets only one-fourth of the credit facilities, with the rest going to the private sector.

Leaders of business and financial sectors recently asked the Central Bank for “cheaper and more credit” and less government competition to enhance economic growth and stability in the financial system.

The President cited Central Bank figures showing that the first quarter ending March 31 this year, domestic credit rose by P22.2 billion compared to the same period last year.

Of the increase, only P6.6 billion was used by the government, while the private sector credits accounted for P15.6 billion.

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May 12—

PRESIDENT MARCOS called on the tourism industry to make a far-sighted and incisive review of the industry to better respond to problems and charter its future growth.

The President, speaking at the 10th anniversary celebration of the Ministry of Tourism in Malacañang, also called for the development of domestic tourism, has announced an executive order setting up basic guidelines for domestic tourism’s promotion.

lie issued another executive order declaring it to be the national policy to establish convention centers in cities like Laoag, Baguio, Cebu, Zamboanga, Davao and Cagayan de Oro.

A third executive order called for the display and sale of local products, including duty-free shops wherever conventions are held. These will be under the supervision of the ministry and the Central Bank.

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May 13—

PRESIDENT MARCOS reported yesterday that Philippine export products now enjoy higher prices and renewed demand in the world market.

In his keynote address at the 14th biennial convention of the Federation of Filipino-Chinese Chambers of Commerce at the Manila Hilton, the President said that this development offers tremendous opportunities for local enterprises.

The President also said that the arrival in the country of various investment and trade missions also augurs well to the growth and progress of the country in the years ahead.

With the global recession on the downward trend, the President said the country “can now begin to reap the fruits of our massive investments in development.”

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May 14—

PRESIDENT MARCOS and farmers will hold a dialogue in a nationwide Pulong-pulong on May 21 to climax this year’s Farmer’s Week celebration.

The President had earlier declared May 15-21 as Farmer’s Week to emphasize the significant achievements in agriculture and in the efforts to uplift the lot of farmers.

The dialogue will be hold over MBS-Channel 4, GMA-Channel 7, RPN-Channel 9, and all affiliated broadcast networks starting 7 a.m. next Saturday.

The President has stressed that a new economic ideology is the rationale for the launching of the reforms under the New Society, stalling from land reform and ending with the political reform granting a barangay participatory democracy.

The Ministry of Agrarian Reform has reported that 3.9 million farmers and their families have benefited from the land reform.

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May 15—

PRESIDENT AND MRS. MARCOS and Don Luis Ma. Aranela announced yesterday the forthcoming marriage of their children, Maria Victoria Irene Marcos and Gregorio Ma. Araneta III, in the morning of June 11.

The wedding will be solemnized by Fr. Francisco Araneta at the Sta. Monica church in Sarrat, Ilocos Norte, birthplace of the President. A breakfast-reception will follow in Sarat and other Ilocos Norte towns.

A formal reception and dinner for Irene and Gregorio will be held in Malacañang at 6 p.m. on June 14.

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Source: National Library of the Philippines

Office of the President of the Philippines. (1983). Official Week in Review. Official Gazette of the Republic of the Philippines, 79(28), clxi-clxiv.