Philippine International Convention Center (PICC), Pasay City
17 September 2015

“In the modern era, we have no shortage of excellent women leaders, no less dedicated to uplifting the lives of others,” President Benigno S. Aquino III said when he graced the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation Public-Private Dialogue on Women and the Economy (APEC PPDWE) at the Philippine International Convention Center (PICC).

Speaking before some 800 delegates and guests from the 21 APEC member-economies, President Aquino shared that women are the pillars of his administration’s reform agenda and that their contributions in society helped spur remarkable economic growth in the past few years.

According to the Department of Trade and Industry (DTI), 54% of all registered trade names in the Philippines are owned by women. The Asian Institute of Management (AIM) also surveyed that 63% of managers and owners of businesses are women. One of the major sectors they are involved in are micro, small and medium enterprises (MSMEs), which accounts for 63.7% of total employment.

“Our goal is to have an inclusive economy, and if it is clear that women are the better partners towards having inclusive growth, then it behooves government to provide them even more opportunities,” the President said.

Based from the World Economic Forum (WEF) Global Gender Gap 2014 Report, the Philippines is the top performer in Asia-Pacific in terms of gender equality. “Our performance in this index will not stop us from pursuing ever more progress…rest assured, the Philippines will remain your partner in expanding opportunities for women,” he added.

The PPDWE, a part of the APEC Women and the Economy (APEC WE) 2015 Fora, underscores the role of women as prime movers of inclusive growth. With members from the public and private sector, academia, and civil society, they conduct dialogues in advancing gender integration, gender equality and women’s economic empowerment agenda for APEC.

Also present during the event were DTI Secretary Gregory Domingo and APEC WE 2015 Fora Chair Nora Terrado.

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