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Published on Jun 19, 2009
Filippino president Gloria Macapagal Arroyo is expected to sign $456 million worth of official development assistance loans with Japan. Arroyo met with about 200 leaders of the Japanese business community to try and persuade them to invest more yen in the Philippines. [Gloria Macapagal Arroyo, Filippino President]: "Japan has been an extraordinary friend and ally of the Philippines. Through the years in good times and bad, Japan has consistently lend a helping hand to the Philippines." She emphasized the economic benefits the proposed Japan-Philippines Economic Partnership Agreement would bring. [Gloria Macapagal Arroyo, Filippino President]: "Under the framework of JPEPA, we will promote economic operation based on your needs, the private sector's needs, as well as the economic cooperation focused on infrastructure and human resource development, which you need, and the improvement of business and investment environment." In October 2008, the Philippines' legislature ratified a trade pact with Japan, its second largest trade partner after the United States. The trade pact includes terms that would usher in Filipino nurses to work in Japan which has a growing geriatric population. [Gloria Macapagal Arroyo, Filippino President]: "For the first time Japan is accepting foreign health workers, Filipino nurses and care workers, who will be very important to the aging population of Japan." According to a government report, 40 percent of Japan's population will be 65 or older by 2055. Arroyo paid a courtesy visit to Emperor Akihito and Empress Michiko on Thursday the 18th, and will attend a summit meeting with Prime Minister Taro Aso in the evening.