MANILA, January 16, 2017 — PresIdent Rodrigo Duterte is eyed to grace the Summit on Bangsamoro Economic Development and International Conference on Islamic Economics and Finance as keynote speaker on February 17-18 at the Manila Hotel and Heritage Hotel, respectively.

Former president of the Philippines Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo, now District Representative of the 2nd District of Pampanga, will also join the summit and deliver a speech on “Partnering for Development: the Public and Private Sector Working together in Service Provision”.

Senate President Aquilino “Koko” Pimentel III will also dwell on the legislative and economic development agenda for Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao (ARMM).

Convened by Southeast Asian Islamic Chamber of Commerce and Industry (SAICCI) headed by Amanoding Esmail and former congressman Dante Liban, its president and national adviser, respectively; and PRRD National People’s Movement for Federalism (PENAMFED) headed by its national chair Ka Freddie Aguilar, the twin events aim to address issues on the promise and viability in Bangsamoro through the introduction and practice of Islamic economics and finance.

The event co-organizers include ARMM which is represented by its Regional Governor Mujiv Hataman; Anak Mindanao (AMIN) Party List led by Congresswoman Sitti Djalia Turabin-Hataman; Mindanao State University (MSU) Main Campus; De La Salle University – Manila (DLSU); National Commission on Muslim Filipinos (NCMF); Philippine Association of Islamic Accountants (PAIA), Inc.; Accounting Research Institute – Universiti Teknologi MARA (UiTM); and International Council of Islamic Finance Educators (ICIFE Secretariat.

As the first ever international ASEAN summit/conference in the Philippines on federalism, the twin events center around the themes: Remaking the ARMM Economy via Federalism: A 2020 Vision; and The world after a globalized Islamic finance: Where do we go from here, respectively.

Amanoding stressed that the summit is organized mainly to examine opportunities and challenges surrounding the ARMM economy, bring together and provide top-level corporate executives and investors, economic development organizations and representatives from across the country, senior administration officials, senators, congressmen, LGU officials, subject matter experts and service providers an avenue where they can promote and discuss the ideals and accrued advantages of federalism and means to fastrack economic development in Bangsamoro under a federal set-up, and maximize financial support from foreign especially Islamic countries.

The economic development summit gives credence to a comprehensive, self-sustained dialogue on “Choosing Bangasamoro” region. It will also highlight speeches of subject experts, lawmakers, and industry representatives as well as focused panel discussion on related topics such as economic snapshot of Bangsamoro region and asset mapping; the Federal role in State and local economic development programs; Halal science and technology as basis for economic development and peace in the region; and imagining and pursuing the ideal Bangsamoro region economy.

Highly acclaimed speakers, both local and foreign were invited to share their piece. Other than Pres. Duterte, Rep. Arroyo and Senate Pres. Pimentel, the Day 1 speakers include Mujiv Hataman, Regional Governor of ARMM Regional Government (ARG); Saffrullah Dipatuan, Board Chairman of Bangsamoro Development Agency; Mara K. Warwick, Country Director of World Bank in the Philippines; Dante Liban, former Congressman of 2nd District of Quezon City; Romulo Miral, Jr.., Deputy Director General of Congressional Policy and Budget Research Department (CPBRD); and Abul Khayr Dangcal Alonto, Chairperson of Mindanao Development Authority.

The Day 2 resource speakers are Sen. Paolo Benigno Aquino IV, Philippine senator; Sitti Djalia A. Turabin-Hataman, AMIN Party List Representative; Tan Sri Dato’ DZULKIFLI ABDUL RAZAK, Chairperson of Islamic Science University of Malaysia; Dr. Haji Zulkifly Baharom, Director & Head of Secretariat of International Council of Islamic Finance Educators (ICIFE); Normah Omar, Director of Accounting Research Institute (ARI), Higher Institutions’ Centre of Excellence (HICoE), Universiti Teknologi MARA Malaysia; Ahmed Kawesa Sengendo, Rector of Islamic University in Uganda; Prof Dr Bubaker Almansori, former Libyan Ambassador to Malaysia; Former Federal Minister Tan Sri Dr. RAIS YATIM Chairperson, ICIFE Eminent International Advisory Board and President of International Islamic University Malaysia; Diwa Guinigundo, Deputy Governor Monetary Stability Sector Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas. They will come and talk on the utility and utilization of Islamic finance as a dominant mode of economic investment scheme as well as the virtues of federalism.

Over 50 delegates have already signed up with summit/conference partners in Indonesia, Malaysia, Singapore and Brunei “in which number is expected to increase in the next few weeks,” Amanoding said.

Given the time-tested expertise of the speakers and relevance of the subjects, the participants will benefit from unique networking opportunities, one-on-one meetings, moderated panel discussion on the latest information on all aspects of investment, and available resources in ARMM.

The research conference strands include Islamic economics, knowledge economy and entrepreneurship development nexus, access to financial services and inclusive financial sector development, Islamic finance and sustainable development, and investing in human capital.