A month after saying he would not honor the Paris Agreement on Climate Change, President Rodrigo Duterte has shown openness to ratify the agreement, a Palace official said on Thursday.
Communications Secretary Martin Andanar said that President would likely ratify the deal as long as it has no effect in the country’s economic situation.
The palace official said that Duterte changed his mind following his meeting with United State Secretary of State John Kerry on July 26.
“The President said in one of his interviews before that he was not in favor of this because of our economic situation in the country. But after the President spoke with the Secretary of State John Kerry,… the President said that as long as it is fair to our economic situation, then everything should be okay,” Andanar said.
Presidential Spokesperson Ernesto Abella added that the US Secretary of State was “helpful in defining certain issues about the Paris Act.”
Earlier, Duterte said that he would not acknowledge the Paris Agreement because of a few provisions “unclear” to him.
“This treaty in Paris, there is no treaty to honor. We have not signed the treaty; we just committed to draft a treaty for us so that we can be able to present our game plan and signed the treaty. That’s pending in Congress because I said, that’s not clear,” Duterte said.
The Philippines is one of 178 countries that signed the treaty, but has yet to ratify it. 19 signatories have already ratified the climate change agreement.
But 19 signatories are not yet enough for the treaty to enter into force. If 55 countries ratify the agreement, participants are expected to hold the increase in global temperature under 2 degrees Celsius.