Sponsorship Speech for Manuel Antonio Teehankee as PH Representative to the WTO

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Mr. Chairman, distinguished colleagues, this Representation as Chairman of the Committee on Foreign Affairs presided over a public hearing this morning to deliberate on the nomination of ATTY.  MANUEL ANTONIO JAVIER TEEHANKEE as Permanent Representative of the Republic of the Philippines to the World Trade Organization in Geneva, Switzerland.

This committee, after deliberating on his qualifications and fitness during the said public hearing, determined that he is fit and qualified to be in the post where he has been nominated, and therefore ruled to recommend to the plenary his nomination for the consent of this body.

Mr. Chairman, our nominee has had several important government positions in the past. He served as the Undersecretary of the Department of Justice from 2001 to 2003, where he was well-regarded for improving the working condition and upgrading the infrastructure and facilities of the agency. He also held a concurrent post as the Government Corporate Counsel from 2002 to 2003.

Dondi, as known to his family and friends, earned the reputation of being maabilidad, with his raw intelligence and photographic memory just bonuses to his package.

He graduated as the valedictorian of his Ateneo law class in 1983 and shortly thereafter, topped the Philippine Bar in 1984, thus making him one of three Bar topnotchers in this hall today. He likewise holds two Masters of Law degrees from the London School of Economics; and Political Science as a Chevening scholar. He is known as a prolific writer and an active resource person on matters of public and private international law and trade policies.

At present, he also teaches as an adjunct professor at the Ateneo de Manila University Law School.

In 2012, he was awarded with the DFA’s Distinguished Service Award for his diplomatic service in his capacity as the former Philippine Permanent Representative to the World Trade Organization in Geneva from years 2004 to 2011, and as the chair of the WTO Committee on Trade and Environment in special session from 2007 to 2011, and the working group on trade and transfer technology from 2005 to 2006.

He was also cited for his extensive contributions in ensuring that the Philippines has participated in all aspects of the WTO dispute settlement system.

Mr. Chairman, it is my distinct privilege and honor to recommend that this body give its consent to the appointment of ATTY. MANUEL ANTONIO JAVIER TEEHANKEE as Permanent Representative of the Philippines to the World Trade Organization in Geneva, Switzerland, with the salary and emoluments of a Chief of Mission, Class 1. I so move, Mr. Chairman.