PN File

The leading development assistance agencies of the United States of America and the Republic of Korea have agreed to pursue joint development projects in the Philippines to boost the country’s climate resilience and address ocean plastic pollution. 

The partnership is a result of the Memorandum of Understanding signed between the United States Agency for International Development (USAID) and the Korean International Cooperation Agency (KOICA) on April 7, 2021 to explore potential collaboration in an array of sectors, including poverty reduction in rural areas, empowerment of women and girls, water resource management, community rehabilitation in Marawi, and climate resilience.

In particular, the U.S. and Korea have agreed to jointly pursue a “Climate Resilient Cities” project to strengthen the resilience of Philippine cities against growing climate threats and vulnerability, and Marine Litter Management initiatives to mitigate the impacts of ocean plastic pollution. 

Expanding the U.S.-Korea partnership in Southeast Asia, including in the Philippines, is one of the key elements of the Joint Statement and the Joint Fact Sheet of the Korea-U.S. Summit, which took place in Washington D.C. on May 21, 2021.

”For the past 75 years, the United States has been a strong friend, partner and ally of the Philippine government in achieving its long-term vision of sustainable and inclusive growth for the Filipino people,” U.S. Embassy Chargé d’Affaires John Law said. “Our work with like-minded partners like Korea will further advance our shared development objectives as we support the Philippines in its journey to self-reliance.”

“Korea is glad to strengthen its partnership with the U.S. in the areas of development cooperation in the Philippines as reflected in the MOU last month and highlighted in last week’s Korea-U.S. Summit.  We will continue to work closely together in the Philippines to promote sustainable development in the Bayanihan spirit, particularly in addressing challenges faced by Philippine cities and vulnerable communities amid rising climate change concerns, among others” said Korean Ambassador Inchul Kim. 

Korea and the United States are among the largest bilateral donors in the Philippines.  Over the past 30 years, Korea has expanded its development assistance in both grants and budgetary support and is the second-largest development assistance country donor in the Philippines.