Stay in the Philippines, Manny V. Pangilinan.
This was the plea of a ranking official in the House of Representatives to the business tycoon, who revealed plans of repatriating his corporate operations to Hong Kong.
House Majority Leader Neptali “Boyet” Gonzales II expressed alarm amid news that Pangilinan will pull out his businesses in the country after his name was dragged in the recent spat in the Senate.
“While I understand his frustration and disappointment, I want to appeal to Mr. Pangilinan to take pause and rethink this repatriation to Hong Kong,” Gonzales said.
The House majority leader warned Pangilinan’s move would become “a very unfortunate blot in the government’s efforts to spur economic growth and investments.”
“The steady performance of our economy today is the result of a confluence of factors that a daring investor in the like of Mr. Pangilinan has greatly contributed into,” the veteran lawmaker explained.
Pangilinan is the chairman of Philippine Long Distance Telophone Company (PLDT) as well as owner of phone company Smart Communications, broadcast network TV5, and cable company Cignal Digital TV.
Earlier, Senator Antonio Trillanes IV accused Pangilinan of pushing Foreign Secretary Alberto del Rosario’s anti-China sentiments during Beijing-Manila talks about claims over Panatag Shoal in May.
Trillanes claimed Del Rosario’s actions would favor Pangilinan’s businesses, which include Philex Mining Corp. that won a contract to explore oil deposits in disputed Recto Bank in West Philippine Sea.
Del Rosario used to work for Pangilinan in several of the businessman's companies, including a stint at Philex as director.
Reelectionist Antonio "Sonny" Trillanes IV became the last senator-elect to have his arms raised by poll officials after the May 13 elections.