Meynardo LB. Montealegre, the Philippine ambassador to Vietnam, suggested that Palawan and the Vietnamese province of Ca Mau form a twinning relationship to further their mutual friendship and cooperation.
In his meeting with provincial government officials, Montealegre emphasized that he selected Palawan to enter into the aforementioned agreement with Ca Mau because of the similarities between the two provinces.
As the agreement’s foreground, he also highlighted the importance of mutual cooperation in which the two provinces can complement one another.
“There should be a meeting of minds between Ca Mau and Palawan, they should be engaged in that cooperation and identify the various areas where that could be a complimentary thing—and the reason why I chose Palawan is that there seems to be a lot of similarities between the two provinces—it’s very rich in forestry, mangroves, agricultural products,” Montealegre said.
The agreement will also strengthen the long standing friendship between the Philippines and Vietnam in terms of maritime security, defense, education, tourism, and trade..
“My primary role as a Philippine Ambassador to Vietnam is to look for ways how we can further strengthen the relationship between Vietnam and the Philippines. Just a little background, we have a very close and friendly relations with Vietnam, we have also close exchanges – people to people and cultural cooperation — like we have a lot of Filipinos there staying and working in Vietnam,” he said.
During the 1970s, Palawan welcomed “boat people,” or Vietnamese refugees who had fled their country due to war.
Montealegre was welcome by Palawan Governor Victorino Dennis Socrates, who expressed support to the future endeavor.
Aside from being the biggest exporter of shrimps and prawns, Ca Mau in the Mekong Delta also has tourism attractions such as wild bird parks, island beach destinations, temples and pagodas, mangrove forests, and lagoon known for its lyrical beauty.