Philippine presidential spokesman Ernesto Abella said Thursday, that the multimillion dollar grants from the European Union will no longer be accepted by Philippines, as the bloc allegedly uses the funding for the intention of interfering in the country’s internal affairs.
“The President has approved the recommendation of the department of finance not to accept grants, this is not necessarily humanitarian aid from the EU, [but grants] that may allow it to interfere with the internal policies of the Philippines,” Abella said. “The Philippines reserves the right to accept loans and grants that help attain its objectives of promoting economic development inclusiveness and reducing poverty, attaining peace within its borders and with its neighbors, and fostering a law-abiding society,” he added.
Earlier this week, European Union threatened to cancel 27 trade agreements with the country due to concern over President Rodrigo Duterte’s controversial anti-drug campaign that have claimed thousands of lives, said Philippine Assistant Interior Secretary Epimaco Densing III. EU is one of the Philippines’ biggest donors. In the period of 2014-2020 the bloc allocated over $300 million to various program in the Philippines over last four decades.EU has contributed more than $1 billion to reduce poverty in the country, the EU delegation said.
President Rodrigo Duterte was sworn in as president in June 2016, has launched a large-scale anti-drug campaign, after taking office, during which police have killed thousands of people during anti-drug operations. Duterte’s anti-illegal drug campaign has been widely criticized by international community.