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Britain seeks to help Philippines build ‘smart cities’

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The United Kingdom is willing to help the Philippines build “smart cities” as it seeks closer economic ties with one of Asia’s fastest-growing economies while preparing to leave the European Union, an envoy said Monday. The eco-friendly metropolis, which British companies have showcased in Hong Kong and Singapore, makes efficient use of digital, electricity and sewage systems, British Ambassador to the Philippines Asif Ahmad said. “Smart cities” will be the theme of a British trade delegation’s visit to the Philippines this week, Ahmad said.

Cities are more than just buildings, roads and infrastructure. It’s how lifestyles are conducted, how people interact with each other,” he told ANC’s “Market Edge with Cathy Yang.” “It’s high time that the Philippines experiences some of our expertise,” he said. The UK wants to play a “bigger role” in rebuilding Philippine infrastructure, he said. British engineers are currently involved in airports in Manila and Cebu, he said. Ahmad said the Philippines is “very much ripe” for a free trade deal with the UK, which will be negotiated separately from the EU.

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