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Economic team moves to change Duterte image

The Duterte administration is planning to hold more forums on its flagship infrastructure development program, dubbed “Dutertenomics,” in a bid to rebrand the President beyond his infamous reputation in the bloody drug war, Trade and Industry Secretary Ramon M. Lopez said.

Lopez told reporters in a briefing that Cabinet officials might choose to include the forum in future overseas trips of President Duterte.

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“That one we can say ‘yes’ because we really want our socioeconomic agenda, our Dutertenomics be understood by the world and for the world to appreciate that President Duterte is not just about drugs, peace and order but really goes beyond that and is really concerned for bringing prosperity to all Filipinos, addressing inequality,” he said.

Top government officials have led two forums overseas since the first Dutertenomics forum was launched in April. Led by the economic managers, the forum—with a tagline “Build! Build! Build!”—has been held in Cambodia and Beijing.

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The team presented the Dutertenomics in front of Chinese media and companies, outlining the big-ticket projects included in the P8.4-trillion infrastructure spending program for the entire six years of the administration.

Amid improving relations with China, the Philippines was invited to join the Belt and Road Forum for International Cooperation in Beijing.

The move to hold more Dutertenomics forums overseas will help provide a counter-narrative to President Duterte, whose reputation has been consistently criticized in international headlines for his violent war on drugs.

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TAGS: Duterte Administration, Dutertenomics, infrastructure development program, Secretary Ramon M. Lopez
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