• Melo Acuna

Secretary Roque says History's repeating itself as EU plans to suspend GSP+

Suspension of GSP would be bad for the Philippines

MANILA – Presidential Spokesperson Secretary Harry Roque said should the European Union make good its threat to suspend the privileges accorded products from the Philippines under the Generalised Scheme of Preference (GSP) for alleged failure to adhere to agreements on respect for Human Rights.

Speaking at his midday press briefing from Baguio City, Secretary Roque said the decision would come at a time when the economic contracted significantly due to the COVID-19 pandemic and things would worsen should the European Union push through their plan.

“If they want to do it, we cannot do anything about it. Let them watch the difficulties the Filipino people would face,” he said in Pilipino. He added the Filipinos have endured difficult times for over 300 years under a European country and History repeats itself.

“The Filipinos would be willing to take whatever they at the EU would like to impose as the way our former colonial masters did,” he added.

Secretary Roque said the Philippine government cannot do anything if the European Union would like to see how the suspension of GSP+ benefits impact on the country’s economy.

“They have done that to other parts of Asia and Africa,” he further said.

Asked further if the Philippine government will not do anything to prevent such a situation from happening. Secretary Roque said if the European Union would like to add to the difficulties faced by the Filipinos during the COVID-19 pandemic, the leadership and the people will accept.

“They (EU) will be the biggest contributor to the violation of right to life of the Filipino. They’ve been mentioning Human Rights violations, while we’re saying our courts have remained open but they won’t believe. They can come over and see. The problem is they look at us as if we’re like Somalia, a failed state,” he concluded. (Melo M. Acuña)

Presidential Spokesperson Harry Roque. (Screen grab from PTV4)

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