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‘We can account for APEC’s P10 B’

Delon Porcalla (The Philippine Star) - November 21, 2015 - 9:00am

MANILA, Philippines – Malacañang assured the people yesterday that the administration would make a full accounting of the P10 billion that was allocated for the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) meetings that concluded last Thursday.

“Of course, it goes without saying that it will be audited. All government expenses are open to the people,” deputy presidential spokesperson Abigail Valte told state-run radio dzRB in her regular weekend interview.

“We are not hiding anything and we know that by the end of the hosting, every single peso will be accounted for,” she assured.

Sen. Francis Escudero had called on the Aquino administration to release the breakdown of expenses for the APEC events.

Valte said the APEC expenses went to the local economy, especially since delegates and visitors spent for their hotel stay, food and other activities during their stay.

She said the expenses went to local hotel accommodations and the infrastructure that would be used later by the people.

Valte clarified that the host government only shoulders the hotel and food expenses of the visiting world leader but not their staff and other foreign delegates.

Escudero noted there have been allocations for the APEC in the years prior to 2015, most of which went to building and fixing infrastructure in Iloilo City, where meetings and dialogues between APEC member economies had been held since July.

The senator said he would also want to know if the government was the one who financed the vehicles used during the APEC or were they donated.

He noted that Toyota Motors Philippines pledged to provide 483 vehicles, including Altis, Fortuner and Hiace, with drivers for the APEC Senior Officials’ Meetings, private sector-related meetings and the CEO Summit.

He added BMW provided more than 200 units of BMW 7 Series long-wheelbase sedan, BMW 5 Series sedan and Gran Turismo to be used by the ministers and heads of state during the leaders’ meeting, and Mercedes Benz is also an APEC mobility partner.

ABIGAIL VALTE APEC ASIA-PACIFIC ECONOMIC COOPERATION FORTUNER AND HIACE FRANCIS ESCUDERO GRAN TURISMO ILOILO CITY MERCEDES BENZ SENIOR OFFICIALS TOYOTA MOTORS PHILIPPINES VALTE
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