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House Speaker thanks visiting counterparts at forum

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Speaker Ferdinand Martin Romualdez on Saturday night expressed his profound gratitude to their Parliamentarian-counterparts in the Asia Pacific region for promoting understanding, collaboration and advancement of peace and development in the region, a press release from the House of Representatives said.

The leader of the 300-plus-strong House of Representatives and fourth highest national elected official in the country delivered his farewell dinner speech at the 31st annual meeting of the Asia Pacific Parliamentary Forum (APPF) that was hosted by the Philippine Congress.

“Through the APPF-member Parliaments’ active engagement and resilient partnerships, we were able to ensure a respectful and peaceful resolution of our common concerns,” Romualdez told the delegates, as he called on them to celebrate and enjoy the successes of the three-day event.

“It is my belief that as Parliamentarians, we were able to accomplish our primary objective – to frame and execute legislative initiatives that are focused on cultivating crucial elements necessary to attain peace and support sustainable economic growth,” he said.

The Speaker was glad that Parliamentarians in the Asia Pacific region were able to discuss among themselves what he called a “vibrant exchange of ideas, experiences and best practices” that was formed “in an atmosphere of openness and trust.”

“In light of the distinctive and often challenging circumstances surrounding the Asia-Pacific Region, we managed to navigate around the most pressing issues confronting us and acknowledged that there is a need for deeper awareness and understanding of our countries’ respective orientation, culture and dynamics,” he said.

The Speaker then extended his “warmest congratulations” to all the APPF delegates for their “unwavering resolve to reinforce our deep commitment to develop relevant policy directions and utilize our expertise to make us more effective in responding to the challenges.”

“On behalf of the people and government of the Philippines, I would like to express my gratitude to each one of you for your outstanding representation of your respective countries and for demonstrating unity in solidarity with your counterparts from other Parliaments to pursue the ideals and goals of the APPF,” Romualdez, an administration stalwart, added.

“It is my fervent hope that you would return to your respective countries with a renewed sense of urgency and expedite the course of action and fulfill the agreements we have established during your time here in the Philippines,” he said.*

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