13 May 2012, Tel Aviv, Israel – Makati Mayor Jejomar Erwin Binay, Jr. visited the Philippine Embassy in Tel Aviv on 10 May 2012 amid his hectic and busy schedule. Mayor Binay visited Israel, together with Davao City Mayor Sara Duterte, to attend the annual Conference of Mayors organized by the Israeli government.
Chargé d'Affaires ad interim Ferdinand P. Flores, Third Secretary and Vice Consul Greg Marie Concha-Mariño, Philippine Honorary Consul in Jerusalem Mr. Shimon Weinbaum and other Embassy staff received Mayor Binay and Makati Chief Accountant Mr. Cecilio Lim III.
During the meeting, Mr. Binay unfurled his plans and programs for Makati over the years which contributed to the significant growth of the city's economy. He also stressed that the Philippine economic growth and development have been positive over the years and expects that this positive trend will continue in the future.
He also lauded the strong cultural ties between the Philippines and Israel, specifically mentioning the plight of some European Jews from Nazi Europe during the Second World War, their long travel to find a second home in the Philippines and their subsequent settling down in the country.
He said that this event, recorded in the annals of history, will remain a lasting monument or a cornerstone that testifies to the strong friendship between the Philippines and Israel.
Mr. Shimon Weinbaum, who is scheduled to receive soon his exequatur from the Foreign Ministry, informed the Mayor of his program, as Philippine Honorary Consul based in Jerusalem, to increase and boost bilateral trade relations between the two countries.
He mentioned his plans about bringing in business and investments to the Philippines. He particularly inquired for more information about the special incentives being offered by the Philippines to foreign investors which he learned during his visit to the Philippines in early March 2012.
Mayor Binay explained that the Philippines indeed provides incentives to foreign investors who would like to set up business in the country. He highly recommended and encouraged the putting up of their establishments in special economic zones where they could avail themselves of privileges.
He also stated that, since Makati is the financial capital of the Philippines, main offices of big business companies are situated in the city. He also conveyed his Office's willingness to assist prospective foreign businessmen in any way they could.
Third Secretary and Vice Consul Greg Marie Concha-Mariño presented a token to Mayor Binay as a gesture of appreciation for visiting the Philippine Embassy and for actively promoting the Philippines as a business hub and good investment destination in the Southeast Asian region.
Mayor Binay earlier met with several Filipino Community leaders, particularly the Federation of the Filipino Communities in Israel (FFCI), to ascertain their welfare and well-being in Israel, among other things.
The Officers of the Federation of Filipino Communities in Israel (FFCI), headed by its newly elected President Mr. Mamerto Malanum (wearing checkered polo), awarded a Certificate of Appreciation to Makati Mayor Jejomar Erwin Binay, Jr., in recognition of his valuable contributions to his constituents and for his unwavering support to migrant Filipino workers.
CDA Ferdinand P. Flores (partly hidden behind Mr. Malanum) and Labor Attaché Merriam Cuasay (wearing plain white polo) were present during the occasion.