Press Release
July 1, 2017


The Spanish government has expressed its support for the development of peace process in the country during the celebration of the 15th Philippine-Spanish Friendship Day on Friday in Baler, Aurora.

"The Spanish government is following with interest the development of the peace processes in the Philippines. The support of these processes has been one of the constants of Spanish cooperation in the Philippines, with various projects implemented by civil society, particularly in Mindanao," Spanish Ambassador to Manila Luis Antonio Calvo said in his speech.

Senator Sonny Angara, who authored the Philippine-Spanish Friendship Day Act (Republic Act 9187) when he was still a congressman together with his father, former senator Edgardo Angara, commended the Spanish government for strengthening its bilateral cooperation with the Philippines.

"We thank them for their unceasing support to our country, especially for extending valuable assistance to help alleviate the situation and to spur the socio-economic growth in conflict areas," Angara said.

"The cordial relations between our countries--a result of the Philippines and Spain's deep historical and cultural ties--have never been stronger," the senator added.

Since 2003, the Philippine-Spanish Friendship Day celebrates the strong relations between the two countries every 30th of June. Members of the diplomatic corps, representatives of the business sector and officials from the country's cultural agencies had joined the festivities in Baler.

The 15th Philippine-Spanish Friendship Day also coincides with the 118th anniversary of the historic Siege of Baler, where Filipino and Spanish soldiers demonstrated their valor, nobility and shared humanity, even during conflict.

Department of Budget and Management Secretary Benjamin Diokno, who was chosen as this year's guest of honor, cited the Spanish government's development projects in the Philippines funded through the Agency Espanola de Cooperacion Internacional para el Desarollo (AECID).

"The Philippines is the only priority country in Asia for official development assistance from Spain, having received up to 278 million euros in the last 15 years," Diokno said in his speech.

Projects carried out by AECID with Philippine government institutions are focused on areas such as governance, support to the peace process, education, health, and disaster risk reduction.

"AECID also has projects on cultural development, and scientific and academic cooperation, making Spanish aid one of the most comprehensive in terms of aid modalities and financing instruments," the budget secretary noted.

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