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Welcome remarks of Commissioner Minella Alarcon at the Preparatory Conference of the APEC HLPD on STHE

Preparatory Conference of the 1st APEC High-Level Policy Dialogue (HLPD)
on Science and Technology in Higher Education (STHE)

19 May 2015, Boracay, Philippines

Commissioner Minella C. Alarcon

Commission on Higher Education

Madam SOM Chair Ambassador Laura Q. del Rosario, my Co-Chair Undersecretary Amelia Guevara of the Department of Science and Technology (DOST), Commissioner Maria Cynthia Rose Bautista of the Commission on Higher Education (CHED), Dr. Sergey Ivanets, Lead Shepherd, Human Resources Development Working Group, Mr. Linhao Chen, Chair, Policy Partnership on Science, Technology and Innovation, Dr. Wang Yan, EDNet Coordinator, President Alfredo Pascual representing the Association of Pacific Rim Universities, heads and members of delegations from APEC member economies, members of the APEC secretariat, esteemed presenters, educators, scientists, researchers, partners from the private sector and industry, colleagues, ladies and gentlemen. A very pleasant good morning.

On behalf of the Philippines, the Commission on Higher Education and the Department of Science and Technology warmly welcome you to the Preparatory Conference of the 1st APEC High-Level Policy Dialogue on Science and Technology in Higher Education.  The HLPD on S&T in Higher Education will be held on July 6-7 this year at the Philippine International Convention Centre in Pasay City, Manila.

The Philippines stands one with the APEC economies in looking at higher education as an important platform for building human capacities in science, technology, engineering and mathematics and in doing so, foster a culture of innovation. In the context of APEC, we believe that our 21st century innovators will also be guided by our common value for inclusive growth among our people.

Our efforts in the next couple of days, although centered on science and technology in higher education, resonate well with allied initiatives that have been presented and discussed in meetings in the Education Network under the Human Resources Development Working Group, the Policy Partnership on Science Technology and Innovation as well as the High-Level Policy Dialogue in Human Capacity Building that was recently done in Port Moresby, Papua New Guinea.

Indeed, it is comforting to know that APEC members share a collegial mindset on how best to move our economies forward and towards inclusive growth. The task ahead, if not the challenge, is on the concrete and specific mechanisms that can help us actualize these desired ends.

In the case of science and technology in higher education and its role in economic development, the range of possible collaborative projects that we can talk about and explore is, indeed, exciting. The next couple of days offer us a chance to shape and pursue this agenda multilaterally and bilaterally and arrive at some agreements for action in our meeting in July.

And so I welcome you all to this conversation. May we all have a productive and collegial interaction. Mabuhay!

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