Security measures at the Ninoy Aquino International Airport (Naia) were tightened as delegates, including ministers and other government officials from different countries, started arriving on Monday to attend the 23rd World Economic Forum (WEF) on East Asia that will be held May 21 to 23 in Makati City in Metro Manila.
Among those who arrived from over 30 countries are officials from Brunei Darussalam, Cambodia, Indonesia, Malaysia, Myanmar and Singapore; members of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (Asean) Secretariat; and business and civil-society leaders.
Vicente Guerzon, Naia senior assistant general manager for security, said Naia, Manila International Airport Authority, Bureau of Customs and Bureau of Immigration are helping secure the arrival of the delegates.
According to Guerzon, the security measures were stepped up at the three remote parking areas located at the Naia Terminal 1, International Cargo Terminal and Balagbag area.
He said the foreign officials will be escorted by the Aviation Security Group of the Philippine National Police (PNP) from Naia to their hotels.
Also expected to attend the event are heads of state, chief executive officers and political, academic and other global leaders.
The WEF on East Asia will discuss issues related to the creation of the Asean Economic Community by 2015.
The Asean Economic Community aims to promote greater inclusion across East Asia and to instill more resilient decision-making in the face of unpredictable economic and natural disruptions.
To further secure the WEF, at least 1,000 personnel will be deployed by the
Metropolitan Manila Development Authority (MMDA).
MMDA Chairman Francis Tolentino also on Monday said most of these personnel will help ease traffic in routes leading to event venues.
Tolentino appealed to motorists to avoid roads leading to the Philippine International Convention Center (PICC), a WEF meeting place, especially on May 22 and particularly Gil Puyat Avenue and Roxas Boulevard between 4:30 p.m. and 7 p.m.
On that date, he said, at least two heads of state and more than 600 business and civil- society leaders from the more than 30 countries joining the forum will proceed for their dinner to PICC in Pasay City.
The PNP will deploy around 6,000 men for the international event.