PH, Israel to sign deal on energy exploration in Palawan

The Philippine government is scheduled to sign an agreement with Israeli oil firm Ratio Petroleum Limited, which will cover energy exploration in Palawan, Malacañang said Tuesday.

“Inaasahan po natin na mapipirmahan ang isang kasunduan para po sa exploration sa panig ng Pilipinas at ang isang kumpanya dito sa Israel, eto po ay with Ratio Petroleum Limited (We are expecting an agreement on exploration to be signed between the Philippines and a company in Israel, the Ratio Petroleum Limited),” Presidential Spokesperson Harry Roque said in a press briefing in Israel.

“It’s another foreign investor helping us explore for energy in an effort to provide energy security,” he added.

Roque did not give further details but said that the franchise will be an area somewhere in the east of Palawan.

According to Roque, Department of Energy (DOE) Secretary Alfonso Cusi has been in charge of preparations for the signing of the agreement.

Earlier, the Philippine and Israeli governments also inked the three other agreements — the Memorandum of Agreement on the Employment of Filipino Caregivers, Memorandum of Understanding on Scientific Cooperation, and Memorandum of Understanding between the Board of Investments and Invest in Israel.

Roque, meanwhile, described as “regrettable” reports that Israeli water purification firm, NUFiltration withdrew its participation in the upcoming business forum, which will be attended by President Rodrigo R. Duterte, due to an earlier remark he made comparing the massacre of Jews during the holocaust to extrajudicial killings in his drug war.

“That’s truly regrettable because we think the Philippines is one of the best investment destinations,” Roque said.

“We will miss those who will not attend but I’m sure interest among investors to invest in the Philippines remains at an all-time high,” he added.