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With only three days to go before the opening of ASEAN Business and Investment Summit, you can now imagine our stress level in managing and preparing for the three-day summit and all the different side events starting this Sunday at 2 p.m. in Solaire Resort and Casino.
We have confirmed six leaders and are waiting for two more to confirm. Most of the leaders will come from the APEC Summit in Vietnam, so you can imagine the intensity of all the preparations for this momentous event. For the past weeks, we are meeting with the ASEAN National Organizing Committee headed by Ambassador Marciano Paynor and Foreign Affairs Assistant Secretary Hellen De La Vega.
I am sure they and their respective teams hardly sleep. I also have to increase my team and include 70 support associates. Last Sunday, I had to call for an emergency meeting with my team to address some concerns. I know Sundays are for family, but it is important to address concerns right away before the summit itself. I am always on the line with our partners coordinating all the necessary arrangements for this event.
Since late last year, we are earnestly and massively preparing for all these events. And now, after all the successful events starting from the Prosperity For All Summit in April, to the ASEAN Business Awards last September, and the recent ASEAN Agriculture Summit held just last month, we are now in the full execution process of this culminating activity for ASEAN BAC.
This is not going to be a perfect summit; we will make mistakes. Some speakers who confirmed may not even show up and cancel on the spot. We will also have to wait for the confirmation of some leaders even on the day itself. But we will do our very best to stage ABIS 2017 as successful as possible. This is my passion, our passion which we all share with the rest of the ASEAN Business Advisory Council members. Our theme of “Partnering for Change, Prosperity for All”, is not just a slogan. It is an action plan.
Our action plan is developed after the framework which is focused on the 3Ms – Mentorship, Money and Market. These 3 Ms are the bedrock in enabling the micro, small and medium enterprises in our region to scale up; empowering the sector that has been statistically proven to be integral to poverty alleviation in the region with 80 to 99 percent of registered enterprises falling under this category.
As the Philippines’ chairmanship is about to end with the last event this year in both the government and private sector, it is indeed a great experience that I will always remember and cherish! My role now is special since my father performed the same duty 10 years ago. I believe that it is really God’s plan and blessing that I am here to fulfill another mission for the entrepreneurship community. Mentorship has been one of the most important aspects in life as I was mentored by my father. I remember being with him on some ASEAN meetings and his civic social work with NAMFREL, Citizens’ League for Good Governance and many other things. I wish to thank him for being the best mentor to me and for all that I am now.
We are expecting more than 1,500 delegates from all over ASEAN and other countries. We look forward to welcoming them to the ASEAN Business and Investment Summit. For the many years that I have been doing summits and conferences like this, this is the first time I really have to get into the details. I am asking for your prayers that all the ASEAN activities in the country will go smoothly as possible.
Let’s all work together to pursue prosperity for all!