Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte witnessed the inking of a $186.7 million worth of joint venture projects during a meeting between Philippines and Singaporean companies on Saturday, April 28, and comically joked the businessmen that they were free to annihilate those who would try to extort money from their firms.
Among the the terms and agreements forged was the letter of intent for the development of 25 new Filipino fast food location stores in Singapore over a period of five years by the Jollibee Worldwide Pte. Ltd. and Golden Beeworks Pte. Ltd.
The joint business initiatives are assumed to generate over 1,920 new jobs, most especially for Filipino workers, the statement reads.
In a press conference during the signing ceremony at Ritz Carlton Hotel in Singapore, Mr. Duterte assured the Singaporean and Filipino businessmen of his personal backing in the battle against corruption that has been deterring foreign investors from coming into the Philippines.
“I give you the right to kill him. Shoot him, stab him or push him out of the window. And I will take care of your pardon at no expense of yours. No, kidding,” Duterte said, pointing out to anyone in the Philippines who would induce businessmen “any unnecessary disturbance, molestation or trouble” in the tack of doing business in the country.
“I am just saying that when everybody starts to mess up with your business, all you have to do is say, ‘Your President has assured me this. Kindly leave the premises. Do not ever come back because I will call this number and this number belongs to the President’,” Duterte said, adding: “And I would show you how I deal with corruption.”
President Duterte also said that he welcomes foreign investors to the Philippines as long as they pay the right taxes and comply with the laws, including environmental requirements.
Duterte stressed that taxes are even discussable as long as there are efforts on the part of the firm to pay them.
The president told the business owners they could even see how he deals with misbehaving government workers, including those who visit business firms in the form of inspection.
Duterte met with the Singaporean and Filipino businessmen after the closing ceremony of the 32nd ASEAN Leaders Summit on Friday afternoon. — Centrio News