Executive Secretary Salvador Medialdea, Governor AmandoTetangco, members of the Monetary Board, my distinguished predecessor, former prime minister and finance minister Cesar Virata, Dr. Lucio Tan and family, treasurer Bobby Tan, BIR Commissioner Billy Dulay, Securities and Exchange Commission Chairman Teresita Herbosa, SSS Chairman Juan Santos, SSS President Emilio de Quiros, PDEA Director General Isidro Lapeña, friends from the Chinese Federation, chairman Florencia Tarriela, vice chairman Felix Alfiler and the rest of the PNB Board, president Reynaldo Maclang, dear friends:
I am very pleased to represent President Rodrigo R. Duterte in today’s ceremony.
It is almost surprising that PNB is celebrating its centennial today. The Bank, as you will recall, started out a as government financial institution until just a few years ago.
Its original role was to fill the yawning gap between the financing needed and the financing available to rapidly build up our sugar industry. It has since moved beyond that role and financed other sectors of our economy. It went from many years that were good and many years that were difficult, particularly during the war and immediately after.
Privatizing the Bank became inevitable. It had grown too large for its original mission. When the Bank was put on sale, it was one of the biggest privatization programs at that time.
The privatization of the PNB, in turn, paved the way for a merger with Allied Bank. The PNB was the surviving entity. It proudly carried the colors of the Republic.
PNB under the leadership of Dr. Lucio Tan has since provided capital efficiently to the Philippine market. It invested in a wide range of products and assisted in mobilizing assets to support the country’s investment needs. From merely providing capital to the sugar industry, PNB became a tower of strength in the banking industry.
The test of markets is the efficient allocation of capital. In this, the PNB under the leadership of Dr. Lucio Tan certainly excels. The Bank has efficiently served the community by parlaying its assets and setting directions for investments.
I am happy that a privatized PNB continued to live up to its role as a capital provider for Philippine industry. I observed this Bank grow from strength to strength, becoming one of the major players in the banking industry.
I look to the contribution of the PNB to the Philippine economy as it enters its second century of service. Congratulations to all the PNB and especially to Dr. Lucio Tan. Thank you very much.