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15/03/2012: Ambassador Cuisia Addresses the Asia Society Luncheon

Shown in the photo above is Ambassador Jose Cuisia (center), delivering his remarks during the Asia Society luncheon, which was held at the Bank of America on March 14, 2012.  To the Ambassador’s left is Mr. Matthew Stumpf, Director of Asia Society’s Washington Office, and to his right is Mr. Oliver Moss, Director of Bank of America’s Global Government Division.

15 March 2012, Washington DC. Philippine Ambassador to the United States Jose L. Cuisia, Jr. served as Asia Society’s featured speaker during its Ambassador’s Luncheon, which was co-hosted by the Bank of America on March 14, 2012.  In attendance were representatives from the diplomatic corps, leading business firms, think tanks, non-government organizations, and the executive and legislative branches of the United States government.

Ambassador Cuisia provided an overview of the outcomes of the January 2012 Bilateral Strategic Dialogue (BSD) held between senior officials of the Foreign Affairs and Defense Departments from the Philippines and the U.S., as well as key developments that took place in 2011, including the signing of the Philippines-U.S. Partnership for Growth, the inclusion of the Philippines in the steering committee of the Open Government Partnership, the 60th anniversary of the Philippines-U.S. Mutual Defense Treaty, the signing of the Trade Facilitation Protocol and the implementation of the Millennium Challenge Account Compact program, among others. The Ambassador also addressed the critical role the Philippines plays in the strategic engagement of the U.S. in Asia Pacific in light of the meeting that will be held between the two countries' Foreign and Defense Secretaries planned in April 2012.

“At the core of (the Philippines-U.S.) partnership is the fundamental adherence to the ideals of democracy and full respect for human rights…..It is difficult to imagine any other country that shares as closely with the U.S. the same set of core values and beliefs as the Philippines, and is as committed to the defense and pursuit of these values,” the Ambassador said.

Guests in attendance were given the opportunity to ask the Ambassador questions.  Among issues raised were the Obama Administration’s Asia pivot, Philippine participation in the Trans-Pacific Partnership, future of ASEAN, dispute in the South China Sea, China’s growing role, overseas Filipino workers, and Philippine infrastructure projects.

Asia Society is a nonpartisan, nonprofit institution with headquarters in New York and affiliated offices in 8 cities in the U.S. and Asia.  Founded in 1956 by John D. Rockefeller III, it is dedicated to promoting mutual understanding and strengthening partnerships among peoples, leaders and institutions of Asia and the U.S.  END