US-ASEAN Business Council Inks MOU with Philippines’ Local Government Executives Group to Help Spur Local Development 

Manila, Philippines -- On Friday, April 5, 2024, the US-ASEAN Business Council (US-ABC), and the Union of Local Authorities of the Philippines (ULAP), the umbrella organization of all leagues of local government units (LGUs) in the country, finalized a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU), formalizing the partnership between the two parties. The MOU establishes a framework for cooperation and collaboration and aims to facilitate joint initiatives and activities in areas of mutual interest to both organizations. ​ 

The MOU was signed by ULAP’s National President, Quirino province Governor Dakila Carlo “Dax” Cua, on the occasion of the ULAP’s National Executive Board meeting at the EDSA Shangri-la in Manila. It was separately signed earlier in Kuala Lumpur by USABC's Senior Vice President and Regional Managing Director, Ambassador Brian McFeeters (ret.). 

The Council and the member companies recognize the role of LGUs as key drivers for inclusive and sustainable growth as emphasized in the Philippine Development Plan 2023-2028. Ambassador McFeeters expressed his enthusiasm, stating, "We are excited to formalize this partnership with ULAP, recognizing the important role of local governments in driving inclusive and sustainable growth. Through this MOU, we aim to support local development efforts and foster economic cooperation between the United States and the Philippines at the grassroots level." 

Meanwhile, Governor Cua emphasized the significance of the partnership, saying, "This partnership signifies a crucial step towards enhancing economic cooperation and sustainable development at the local government level. ULAP is committed to working closely with the Council to leverage private-public collaboration in areas such as healthcare, digital solutions, tourism, and financial inclusion, ultimately advancing the socio-economic landscape of the Philippines." 

This partnership highlights the increased significance given to local and regional development in the country. The MOU provides the following possible areas of private-local public sector collaboration: healthcare infrastructure, digital solutions for efficient business operations, local tourism, financial inclusion, innovative procurement, among others that the parties may agree on. 

As a first step to implement the MOU, the Council will be conducting its maiden Local Government Outreach on May 23, 2024, in conjunction with the 2024 Philippines Business Mission and Indo-Pacific Business Forum on May 20-22, 2024. The event aims to provide a platform to discuss the priorities and critical challenges of LGUs and pinpoint opportunities for collaborative solutions to help them achieve their local development goals.


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About US-ASEAN Business Council

Since 1984, the US-ASEAN Business Council has been the premier advocacy organization for U.S. corporations operating within the dynamic Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN). Worldwide, the Council's membership of nearly 170 companies generates almost US$7 trillion in revenue and employs more than 14.5 million people.  Today our members include the largest U.S. companies conducting business in ASEAN and range from newcomers to the region to companies that have been working in Southeast Asia for more than 100 years. The Council has nine offices around the globe, in Washington, DC; New York, NY; Bangkok, Thailand; Hanoi, Vietnam; Jakarta, Indonesia; Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia; Manila, Philippines; Singapore; and Yangon, Myanmar.


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