WB welcomes peace agreement between govt, MILF

October 15, 2012 10:32 pm 

MANILA, Oct. 15 — The World Bank on Monday said the framework agreement between the government and the Moro Islamic Liberation Front (MILF) marks an important step toward achieving peace, security and development that will benefit all Filipinos.

"Much work remains to be done to turn the Framework Agreement into a final Peace Agreement and, more importantly, to translate it into security and prosperity for the people of Mindanao, particularly the Bangsamoro," the World Bank said in a statement.

The World Bank – together with other international development partners– has been supporting peace and development in Mindanao for many years.

"The World Bank stands ready to work with the Government, MILF and other sectors of Philippine society to intensify our efforts to improve the lives of many Filipinos, particularly the poor in Mindanao, and help build the momentum for lasting peace and inclusive growth," the lender said.

In a separate statement, the Makati Business Club and the Management Association of the Philippines (MAP) said with this development, the long-awaited structural reforms can be established, leading to what can truly be a lasting peace in Mindanao.

"The business community believes that the Framework Agreement, and the process that led to its final form, abides by the provisions of the Constitution and balances the valid interests of the Government of the Philippines, the MILF, and the Bangsamoro people. We laud the intent of the parties to ensure that the creation of the Bangsamoro political entity is undertaken in an inclusive and democratic manner. We also appreciate the efforts to duly take into account the values, culture, history, and struggles of the Bangsamoro in crafting the agreement," MBC and MAP said.

"Besides other factors, we believe that economic neglect has been among the foremost reasons for the generations-long conflict. As such, it is gratifying to note that the agreement has garnered the favorable response of the business and international diplomatic community.

Along with the promise of peace, we hope that this optimism will later translate into business relationships in the Bangsamoro, leading to the realization of Mindanao’s potential to be an integral part of the Philippines’ improving economic engine and, ultimately, to the upliftment of the lives of the Bangsamoro people," MBC and MAP added. (PNA)

FPV/DA/JCF

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