US envoy says it’s an accident but needs a probe

United States Ambassador to the Philippines Sung Kim expressed his concern over the maritime incident that involved the sinking of a Filipino boat by a Chinese vessel at the Recto Bank.

While the US envoy believed it was an accident, he suggested an investigation.

“I think there should be an investigation.  We need to take measures to prevent [the incident] from happening again”, expressed Ambassador Kim on Tuesday morning during a roundtable discussion with Davao media at the Seda Abreeza Hotel.

“It appears that it was an accident. We are looking to Filipino and Chinese officials to get to the bottom of the incident. Find out what exactly happened. And what needs to be done to hold those responsible accountable. And what needs to be done to prevent accidents like that in the future from happening,” he said.

The incident, according to the US envoy, is a reminder that there needs to be responsible maritime behavior and adherence to international laws. He

underscored the meaningful code of conduct for everyone to follow.
Ambassador Kim’s visit to the city also allowed him to meet with local government officials, including Davao City mayor Sara Duterte-Carpio, to discuss about the progress of the existing PH and US relationship specifically in terms of business ventures in Mindanao.

On the upcoming business summit in the city, he said, “We have a long history of investment. USAID is in Mindanao and US companies has since invested in Mindanao”.

To date, a number of US companies has invested in Mindanao. Adding to that some BPO companies established and located in Mindanao that has created jobs for young Filipinos.

“Mindanao remains to be a destination for investors”, he shared. He further assured that they are continually looking at Mindanao in so far as trade expansion is concerned.

Despite the issue of security, Kim said there exists a continued strong US interest in the region. 

“I encourage companies and investors to look at Mindanao as an investment location,” Kim said.