INCOMING President Ferdinand “Bongbong” Marcos Jr. is seriously considering an invitation to attend the UN Climate Change Conference’s 27th session of the Conference of the Parties (COP 27), which will be held in Egypt this November.
Ambassador Ahmed Shehabeldin Ibrahim of Egypt invited Marcos during his courtesy call Monday.
“Today I had the pleasure to meet his Excellency, President-elect Ferdinand Marcos Jr. and I submitted to him an official congratulations from the Egyptian President, his Excellency Abdel Fattah Saeed Hussein Khalil El-Sisi…. I also took this opportunity to extend the invitation of his Excellency…to take part in November COP 27,” he said in a news briefing.
If his schedule would allow it, Marcos, a staunch advocate of protecting and preserving the environment, could attend the conference.
The meeting could be the most significant as delegates are expected to tackle subjects designed to most effectively respond to the climate change crisis.
The meet will also primarily focus on implementation, with nations expected to show how they will, through legislation, policies, and programs, begin putting the Paris Agreement into practice, at home.
The ambassador further said that Egypt is also keen on strengthening relations with the Philippines by developing other areas of cooperation between the two countries, such as agriculture and tourism, as well as climate change response.
Meanwhile, Russian Ambassador Marat Pavlov, in a separate courtesy call on Monday, assured Marcos that Russia is willing to extend assistance to the Philippines with its energy resources amid the spike in oil prices due to the conflict between Russia and Ukraine.
“It is a sovereign period, we are ready to cooperate with the Filipino side, and to extend our helping hands, to satisfy the needs in the sources of energy,” he said.
Oil and gas prices have surged over Russian energy supplies and soaring inflation brought by the Russian-Ukraine war that started in February of this year.
Pavlov also conveyed Russia’s willingness to expand areas of cooperation with the Philippines.
For his part, the President-elect also said the Philippines will cooperate with the Russian Federation, but he will maintain his independent policy in connection with the conflict between Russia and Ukraine.
In a related development, Asian Development Bank President Masatsugu Asakawa also paid a courtesy call to Marcos Jr. and assured him of the ADB’s strong commitment to supporting his incoming administration’s development priorities.
Asakawa added that just as the ADB supports infrastructure investment, including projects under the Duterte administration’s Build, Build, Build program, supports agricultural development and food security, and invests in Filipinos’ welfare, the ADB will explore opportunities with the Marcos Jr. administration’s priorities on climate change action to support a resilient and green economic recovery, climate smart transportation, and continuing investments in education, vocational skills training, employment programs, health promotion, and social protection.
He also invited Marcos Jr. to be the guest of honor at the ADB’s 55th Annual Meeting in September.
Aside from the envoys from Russia and Egypt, Ambassadors Grete Sillasen of Denmark, and Ilan Fluss, of Israel, also held separate courtesy calls on the same day.