Belmonte named special envoy to Japan

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    PRESIDENT Duterte has appointed former Speaker Feliciano “Sonny” Belmonte Jr. as special envoy to Japan to oversee trade and market access.

    Aside from Belmonte, the President also appointed doctor and businessman Jaime T. Cruz as special envoy to China for trade and market access.

    The appointment papers of the two “special envoy(s) of the President” were signed last October 15, a list of appointees for October released by Malacanang yesterday showed.

    Belmonte, a former Liberal Party stalwart and Quezon City congressman, retired from politics last year, while Cruz, initially considered by Duterte as Philippine Health Insurance president and chief executive officer, is the president/CEO of the JTC Group of Companies.

    The list of appointees also included ad interim Budget and Management Secretary Wendel Avisado and ad interim Agriculture Secretary William Dar. The appointment papers of two were signed last October 11.

    Also appointed were Philippine Merchant Marine Academy Commodore Joel Abutal, UCPB board member Golda Margareth Argel, and Presidential Communications Operations Office Director III Pedro Miguel Santos.

    The appointment of Abutal was made last October 10; Argel on September 17; and Santos on October 15.