Duterte gets pledge from AirAsia CEO Tony Fernandes to beef up flights, develop airports

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AirAsia Group CEO, Tony Fernandes

President Rodrigo got a pledge from AirAsia CEO Tony Fernandes to expand operations in the Philippines in a show of faith and trust in the Duterte administration.

The pledge was made on the sidelines of the World Economic Forum (WEF) on the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) in Phnom Penh, Cambodia, Transportation Secretary Arthur Tugade, who was with President Duterte during the meeting, told reporters in Hong Kong on Friday.

“‘Mr. President, just to show my faith in your country and my trust in your leadership, I am ready to expand my air coverage, air travel coverage in Manila’,” Fernandes told the President, according to the Transportation secretary.

President Duterte and his entourage arrived in Hong Kong late Thursday for a working visit.

“‘Now in Caticlan, I can go to Puerto Princesa. I can fly to Davao,'” Fernandes further said, Tugade noted.

“‘And Mr. President, if the law will allow, I am even ready to help put up airports,'” Tugade recalled Fernandes as having said during the meeting with Duterte.

“This is a specific, very clear indication of the acceptability of the President’s leadership insofar as his economic program is concerned,” Tugade noted.

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