BUSINESS After denying Del Rosario’s entry, expert asks if Hong Kong still ‘safe’ for business

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Former Philippine Department of Foreign Affairs Secretary, Albert Del Rosario  was denied entry to Hongkong exactly a month after former Ombudsman chief Conchita Morales -Carpio was denied entry as well.

Both former top Philippine officials has filed cases agains Chinese President Xi Jin Ping and other Chinese top officials of crimes against humanity before the International Criminal Court (ICC)justice. This raises a question now whether Hongkong is still ideal and a safe place for investments.

Del Rosario is a major stakeholder of First Pacific, A Hongkong based company whose main business and assets  are into telecommunications, food production and infrastructure.First pacific owns about 42 percent of the Manila based Metro Pacific Investment Company, the Manila water saource Maynilad, Metro Pacific Tollways and about 25 % stake in Philippine’s major telecommunications company , Philippine long Distance Telecommunications or PLDT.

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First pacific is a joint venture between the Philippine’s and Indonesia with major stake in Indonesia’s Sukses Makmur Tbk, Indofood Agri Resources Ltd and the Metro Pacific Tollways, PLDT and other companies in the Philippines.

Del Rosario was on his way to Hongkong to attend the compnay’s board meeting. But he was held in custody at the Hongkong airport  for six hours. Hongkong airport immigration officials were mum as to why the Philippine former diplomat was denied entry.

“This is a major thing. Del Rosario is a major stakeholder in First Pacific, which is based in Hongkong. His partners are Indonesians. Again goes to question of whether Hongkong is still a safe place for capital.” AAron Connelly said in a tweet last Friday. Connelly is from the International INstitute for Strategic Studies in Singapore.

Manuel V. Pangilinan also known as MVP is a Philippine business tycoon and is the managing director and CEO of First Pacific while Anthoni Salim of Indonesia conglomerate is the Chairman. Albert Del Rosario is a non executive boar member of First Pacific.

It is noted that Del Rosario called for the joint invistigation of the apparent sinking of a Filipino fishing vessel by a chinese boat in the West Philippine Sea. Del ROsario made the call on the day when he was denied entry.

The Chinese ship Yuemaobinyu42212 has reportedly sunk a Filipino fishing vessel  in the disputed West Philippine Sea at around 11:30 PM (Local time) two weeks prior to Del Rosario’s scheduled travel to Hongkong.The ship hit the back of a Philippine Fishing vessel and the Chinese left the boat to sink with some Filipino fisherman still on board. A vessel on board vietnamese fishermen who were in the same area rescued the Filipinos.

 This latest incident of boat sinking by a Chinese vessel has angedred many Filipino and many Philippine officials has demanded the philippine President rodrigo Duterte to take a  stronger stand on the latest altercation between Filipiono Fishermen and Chinese nationals in the West Philippine Sea.

Exactly a month ago, the former Philippine Chief Justice and Ombudsman was also denied entry to Hongkong. And just like the former, Conchita Morales-Carpio was not given an explanation as to why she was held and denied entry to Hongkong. Though Carpio was allowed entry to Hongkong after the Philippine General Consulate officials in Hongkong stepped in. However, Carpio opted  to fly back home in Manila after the incident.

Carpio, her husband, and grandchildren were suppose to go on a bonding vacation in Hongkong’s Disneyland.

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