Loading
Breaking
Now Reading: ROBUST AND GROWING | US increased Foreign Military Financing for the Philippines
ROBUST AND GROWING | US increased Foreign Military Financing for the Philippines
November 7, 2019 , 05:47 PM

By Dale De Vera, News5

(November 7, 2019) WASHINGTON, D.C.— The United States has increased military funding to help modernize the local armed forces, Manila’s diplomats to the United States said on Thursday, amid rising tension in the disputed South China Sea.

Philippine embassy officials said the level of Foreign Military Financing (FMF) has been increasing since President Rodrigo Duterte was swept into office in 2016 despite his anti-American rhetoric and pro-China policies.

Speaking to a select group of visiting Filipino journalists, Philippine Ambassador to US Jose Manuel Romualdez said this only show how US supports the plan to modernize the Philippine military.

“We have indicated that we would like to really modernize and upgrade our Armed Forces” Romualdez said. “We want to really give it a very strong defense posture. I think they too would like to see us be able to do. Kaya nga mutual defense treaty ‘di ba? Dapat mutually defensible tayo.”

When asked to describe the state of Philippine-American relations, he said: “I think our relationship with this country is probably one of its best.”

Minister and Consul Rosanna Villamor-Voogel of the Philippine Embassy in Washington also said the country received a bigger amount of foreign military finance assistance from the U.S. government in the last two years

“We recently received news actually that the assistance combined to be provided by the US government would amount to about $53 million and that is higher than two years ago,” Villamor-Voogel said.

Villamor-Voogel said the significant military aid is only an indication of the continued interest of the US government to find ways to help and complement the priority of President Duterte.

Figures from the US State Department showed the FMF for the Philippines in 2014 amounted to $50 million and went even lower in 2015 at $40 million – the last two years in the previous administration.

Duterte was elected in 2016.

In a briefing at the Philippine Embassy in Washington, Minister and Consul Gunther Sales explained that since fiscal year 2016, the Philippines has received a total of $554.55 million in defense assistance from the US State Department as well as US Defense Department.

“Broken down, $267.75 million has come from foreign military financing, including Southeast Asia Maritime security assistance and another $73 million plus in fiscal year 2018 assistance another $278.8 million in DOD Security Assistance and over $8 million in international military education and training funds,” Sales explained.

Meanwhile, Director of the Office of Maritime Southeast Asia of the US Department of State Bureau of East Asian and Pacific Affairs, Mark Clark, told Filipino journalists that the two countries continue to cooperate closely in other important security areas with counter-terrorism among others.

Clark said, “as friends and allies, we stand together with the Philippines to pursue and promote a free and open Indo-Pacific, a region which all countries large and small secure their sovereignty, remain free of coercion and are able to prosper into the future.”

“We remain dedicated to working together with the Philippine government together with the Filipino people to pursue our common goal of shared goals of security and prosperity,” he added.

The Philippines has partial claims in the South China Sea, a strategic waterway also claimed bu Brunei, Malaysia, Taiwan, Vietnam and China.

US has been transferring surveillance equipment to enhance the country’s maritime domain awareness in the South China Sea.

US and Philippine militaries have been holding maritime security drills near the disputed waters believed to be rich in energy resources. (MM)

More From News5
Nasa 33,000 sa Cebu, tumanggap ng ayuda kahit ‘di kwalipikado
Bukod sa COVID-19, pinoproblema na rin sa Cebu ang nasa 33,000 na nakakuha ng ayuda pero hindi naman qualified. Mayroon din daw nasa 1,000 na doble ang nakuha.
Published On: July 12, 2020
PNP Central Visayas chief, tiwalang makababalik din sa GCQ ang Cebu City
#SaTotooLang | Tiwala ang hepe ng PNP Central Visayas na kaya nang bumalik sa general community quarantine ng Cebu City sa loob ng dalawang linggo, na unang sinabi ni Secretary Roy Cimatu. Aniya, kahit patuloy ang pag-akyat ng mga kaso ng #COVID19 sa lungsod ay dapat din daw tignan ang bilang ng mga gumagaling sa sakit.
Published On: July 12, 2020
'Emerging COVID-19 hotspots,' binabantayan na ng DOH
Tinututukan na ng Department of Health ang anim na lugar sa Visayas dahil sa onti-onting pagdami ng mga kaso ng #COVID19 dito, kabilang na ang Cebu.
Published On: July 12, 2020
Pagkamatay ng mga isda sa Laguna Lake, 'di raw dahil sa COVID-19
Nilinaw ng Bureau of Fisheries and Aquatic Resources na hindi ang COVID-19 ang naging dahilan sa pagkamatay ng 800 metric tons ng isda sa Laguna Lake, na nagdulot ng pagkahina ng bentahan sa mga palengke. | via Gary de Leon
Published On: July 12, 2020
Pamimigay ng PWD IDs sa Q.C., itinigil muna
Pansamantalang itinigil ng Quezon City ang pag-issue nito ng PWD card matapos madiskubreng nakakuha rin ng card na nagbibigay discount sa ilang serbisyo ang mga wala namang kapansanan. | via Jenny Dongon
Published On: July 12, 2020
Grade 7 student, viral matapos i-enroll ang sarili
Viral sa social media ang kwento ng isang batang ini-enroll ang sarili sa isang computer shop sa Caloocan. Ang ama naman ng bata, aminado ring hindi pamilyar sa makabagong paraan ng pag-enroll para sa nalalapit na pasukan. | via JC Cosico
Published On: July 12, 2020
Is Philippines ready for the blended learning scheme?
The kid who went viral online after struggling to enroll via piso-net, or coin-operated prepaid Internet, now faces an even bigger problem: He has no gadgets for DepEd's blended learning scheme.
Published On: July 12, 2020
DOLE, planong magbigay ng P40-B ayuda sa mga manggagawa
Planong magpatupad ang DOLE ng P40-B wage subsidy para sa mga manggagawang apektado ng COVID-19 pandemic. Nasa 90,000 na kasi ang nawalan ng trabaho dahil sa krisis.
Published On: July 12, 2020
OWWA, nanganganib ma-bankrupt dahil sa COVID-19 pandemic
Nagbabala ang Overseas Workers Welfare Administration na malapit na itong ma-bankrupt dahil sa patuloy nitong pagtulong sa mga OFW na nawalan ng trabaho dahil sa #COVID19 pandemic. | via Marie Ann Los Baños
Published On: July 12, 2020
DOH, ipinaliwanag ang mga kasalukuyang datos sa COVID-19
Ipinaliwanag ng Department of Health na kahit pataas ang COVID-19 cases sa bansa, gradual ito at hindi biglaan. Bumaba rin daw ang positivity rate dahil sa lumalawak na testing capacity. Naobserbahan naman ng kagawaran ang emerging hotspot (lugar kung saan dumarami ang kaso) sa Cebu City, Cebu province, Ormoc City, Southern Leyte, Leyte, at Samar.
Published On: July 12, 2020
Top Stories
TECH SPAT | Trump bans transactions with Chinese owners of TikTok, WeChat
WASHINGTON, Aug 6 (Reuters) – U.S. President Donald Trump announced Thursday sweeping bans on U.S. transactions with China’s ByteDance,
Published On: August 7, 2020
BEIRUT BLAST | Two more Filipinos die in Lebanon warehouse explosion, raising to death toll to 4
(August 07, 2020) – Two more Filipino citizens died in the massive warehouse explosion in Beirut, the foreign office said on Friday, raising
Published On: August 7, 2020
DIPLOMATIC OFFENSIVE | Pompeo calls allies in Southeast Asia to assure of US support on sea dispute
By Manny Mogato, News5 editor-at-large (August 7, 2020) – U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo has spoken with two Southeast Asia security par
Published On: August 7, 2020
MEDICAL INSURANCE MESS | PhilHealth denies corruption allegations; plans to sue whistleblower
(August 06, 2020) – The state-run medical insurance agency on Thursday denied the corruption allegations made by a former anti-fraud official
Published On: August 6, 2020
TREATMENT CENTERS | Philippines setting up ‘one hospital’ command to address shortage of hospital beds for COVID cases
(August 6, 2020) — The Philippines has set up a “one hospital command center” to address shortage of hospital beds for critical and severe ca
Published On: August 6, 2020