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APEC urged to adopt disaster risk reduction framework

MANILA, Philippines – Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) member economies are urged to adopt a framework on disaster risk reduction that will be proposed by the Philippines in an upcoming APEC meeting.
“The Philippines will formally push adoption of APEC on operations framework for disaster risk reduction in September,” said APEC 2015 National Organizing Council Undersecretary Ferdinand B. Cui Jr., at the briefing of the High-Level Policy Dialogue on Science and Technology in Higher Education held here on Thursday.
Cui, who is also the Senior Officials’ Meeting (SOM) Vice Chair, mentioned that science and technology as well as higher education are fundamental enablers to develop disaster risk reduction capacity among APEC economies.
He also said that disaster risk reduction and management is crucial for the Asia Pacific region with the recent typhoons, disasters, and other calamities that battered Asia Pacific countries.
“We need to respond in this global reality,” Cui said.
The Philippines, after experiencing one of the strongest typhoon in history — Typhoon Haiyan, is in the forefront of the framework, according to Cui. He added that science and technology through higher education will help in mitigating risks brought by disasters and calamities.
“We see science and technology, innovation, and of course higher education at the forefront of the APEC discussion,” he said.
Cui emphasized that disaster risk reduction is common to Asia Pacific countries, thus member countries should respond as a whole.
“We are hoping that APEC economies will adopt the framework which we’re going to propose,” he added.

Criselda Cabangon David, a happy mother of two kids, is a full-time Sociologist at the City Government of Lucena, Quezon Province. She is currently the Managing Editor of Ang Diaryo Natin Sunday News, a weekly local community newspaper in the Philippines and an active member of the National Union of Journalists of the Philippines.