MANILA, Philippines – President Benigno Aquino III is spending P87.1 million for his official trips to the United Kingdom and the United States, where he will hold bilateral meetings with leaders of the two superpowers, Malacañang said Monday.
The P87.1 million will cover accommodation, telecommunications, transportation, food and equipment, among others, for the President and his official party, a statement from Executive Secretary Paquito Ochoa Jr. said.
President Aquino left Monday afternoon for London via a chartered Philippine Airlines flight along with an 89-member delegation as official guest of the UK from June 4 to 6.
After his trip to the UK, the Chief Executive's first to Britain since he became President in 2010, he will proceed to the US for a working visit from June 6 to 8 on the invitation of President Barack Obama.
The Philippine delegation includes Foreign Affairs Secretary Albert Del Rosario, Transportation and Communications Secretary Manuel Roxas II, Finance Secretary Cesar Purisima, Defense Secretary Voltaire Gazmin, Trade Secretary Gregory Domingo, Toursim Secretary Ramon Jimenez, Energy Secretary Rene Almendras and PCDSPO Secretary Ramon Carandang.
Philippine Ambassador to Washington D.C. Jose Cuisia Jr., Philippine Ambassador to London Enrique Manalo and Presidential Protocol Chief and Presidential Assistant on Foreign Affairs Miguel Perez-Rubio are also included in the presidential entourage.
Aquino’s visit to the UK will be his first since his election. His visit to the US will be his fourth since 2010.
The President will hold a bilateral meeting with Prime Minister David Cameron to discuss the Philippines-UK political and economic cooperation. He will also meet with several major British investors, take part in the Philippine fun tourism campaign and dialog with the Filipino community in the UK, which is the largest in Europe.
Aquino and President Obama is set to discuss a broad range of bilateral, regional and global issues.
The Department of Foreign Affairs said Secretary of State Hillary Clinton will host a luncheon in honor of President Aquino and his delegation at the Benjamin Franklin State Dining Room of the State Department in the US capital.
The President is also scheduled to meet with leaders of the US Senate at a reception organized by Senate President Pro Tempore Daniel K. Inouye on Capitol Hill and will be guest honor at the launch of the US-Philippines Society.