MANILA (Mabuhay) – As the Philippines gears towards achieving the goal of upgrading its defense capabilities, President Benigno S. Aquino III on Thursday opened this year’s Asian Defense, Security and Crisis Management (ADAS) exhibition and conference, held at the World Trade Center in Pasay City.
This is the first ADAS exhibition and conference to be held in the country. The ADAS 2014 is envisioned to afford all participating countries the opportunity for various interactions to realize their urgent requirements on defense, security, peace and order, disaster readiness, and crisis management, among others.
President Aquino, in his speech, acknowledged the significance of holding the trade show and conference in the country as they will benefit our uniformed men and women, who are always on the front line in times of crises, conflicts, and calamities.
“Anytime we have an opportunity to make our military more efficient, we have every intention of taking that opportunity. More than any other time in history, our country is making certain that our soldiers’ commitment on the field is met not only with the respect and admiration of our people, but also by the necessary support from government,” he said.
Defense Secretary Voltaire Gazmin mentioned that this event provides additional vibrancy to the Philippine economy as the organizers have created genuine opportunities for our domestic companies to establish business linkages with participating international exhibitors.
Andrew Marriott, managing director of the Asia Pacific Expo, which organized ADAS, cited the Philippines’ improved economic situation as among the reasons behind their decision to launch the event in the country, on top of the government’s commitment to pursue the Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) Modernization Act.
The AFP Modernization Act is in the first five-year phase of activity and significant progress has already been made since its enactment with the government’s recent acquisition of various aircraft, naval vessels, helicopters, and armored vehicles.
The ADAS organizers have brought in goods and services for the evaluation and determination of the specific requirements of concerned government agencies. They have also highlighted the Philippines as a potential growth market for international defense, security, and crisis management industries and products.
The exhibition features 130 companies from the United States, the United Kingdom, Canada, France, Germany, Italy, Spain, Sweden, South Korea, Israel, Turkey, Brazil, Czech Republic, Lithuania, Malaysia, and Belarus, among others. (MNS)