year to predicting the final GDP growth and we are optimistic that he is rightagain. He has been working hard to eliminate obstacles and simplifyingprocedures for investment and trade.3.
Secretary of Tourism Mon Jimenez
provided us good vibes about the growth inthe tourism sector. We hope the needed infrastructure will be built fast enoughto cater for increasing demand.4.
Former Secretary Bobby de Ocampo
treated us to his wise commentary on thenational economic and business environment.5.
National Competitiveness Council Co-Chair Bill Luz
once again lifted our confidence and encouraged our support for his campaign to raise the countryinto the top ranks globally.6.
As one of my former bosses, I have the pleasure to thank
Deputy DirectorGeneral RolyTungpalan
for giving us an overview of the government’s effort toensure the availability of necessary infrastructure.7.
Top media personalities in the Philippines ensured the highest level ofdiscussion. We thank
Coco Alcuaz, Maria Ressa and LalaRimando
with their wide range of experience and expertise gavegenerously of their time and their views. Such private sector experts andinvestors are at the core of the Arangkada recommendations.9.
United States Ambassador Harry Thomas and USAID/Philippines Mission DirectorGloria Steele
, joined us at the beginning of the Forum to express the support ofthe US Government for Arangkada. The donor community, including AUSAID,are strong supporters of investment climate reform.10.
My last thank you is to my JFC colleagues who spoke today and for the staff ofAmCham, other JFC members and TeamAsia event management who haveput in many long hours over several months to make this event a great success.In particular, I want to thank John Forbes of AMCHAM.