Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte has spoken before the closing ceremony of the 51st annual meeting of the Asian Development Bank. During his speech Duterte affirmed that it is only through tackling corruption and implementing a clean economy that both works to reward Filipinos for their labour while also attracting investment from the region and from abroad that the country can help to increase its GDP and its overall economic output.
Duterte made it clear in his speech that western models for development are incompatible with growing Asian economies and that instead, the Asian Development Bank should work to create a competitive and fair environment for the world’s most economically and culturally dynamic continent by adopting what could be called ‘modern economics with Asian characteristics’. To this end, Duterte stated,
“We have to find our own ways to [meet] the challenges of the age. We will focus on policies that will fit the Asian mind. We will focus on the … many things and challenges that are unique in our kind,” the president of the Philippines said. “The next few years will be interesting times for the region. There is a time when Asia will lead the world and provide an example to other developing economies”.
Like Singapore’s founder Lee Kyan Yew, Duterte understands the importance of making Asian economies attractive to global investment while also tailoring them to work in the service of building a balanced, equitable and prosperous economy for ordinary people.
Now watch Duterte’s remarks from the 51st annual meeting of the Asian Development Bank from Mandaluyong City.