At the World Economic Forum
When President Aquino attended the World Economic Forum summit meeting in Davos, Switzerland, this year, he had a good story to tell. The Philippines has not been badly affected by the European financial crisis. Exports are up. And even more important, foreign investments are up. In short, the Philippines is on the move, economically, and has shed its former classification as "The sick man of Asia."
Much of the renewed financial vitality is due to the administration's policy of fighting corruption. Potential foreign investors have often been turned off in the past when they discovered that they had to pay off officials at each level of government, which added considerably to the overall costs of investing in this country.
At the meeting in Davos, President Aquino got his message of a level playing field across to investors from 21 foreign countries. While in Switzerland, he was also able to meet on the sidelines of the WEF meeting with the former French finance secretary, who is now the Managing Director of the International Monetary Fund (IMF), Christine Lagarde, who is considered one of the world's most influential women.
Although Lagarde is French, they were able to carry on their 40-minute meeting in English, since Lagarde spent a number of years assigned to Washington, and speaks English fluently. …