Teodoro cites importance of CADC at Maritime Security Symposium
Wed | May 08, 2024

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May 8, 2024 (Quezon City) | Secretary of National Defense (SND) Gilberto C. Teodoro, Jr. championed the need for a Comprehensive Archipelagic Defense Concept (CADC) during his keynote address at the Maritime Security Symposium 2024 of the Philippine Navy on Wednesday.

Secretary Teodoro emphasized the urgency of the CADC, highlighting its role in addressing contemporary threats to Philippine territorial integrity and sovereign rights. He stressed the need to adapt defense strategies for the evolving security landscape, prioritizing the fortification not only of maritime borders, but also the Philippines’ exclusive economic zone.

“We see this need now because there is an actual strong challenge to our sovereign rights, our territorial integrity by an interloper,” the defense chief added.

Acknowledging the limitations of national resources, the SND called for a balance between bolstering domestic defense capabilities and fostering strategic alliances, emphasizing the BALIKATAN Exercises as a successful model of such partnerships. “It caused some sort of consternation by those naysayers who really don't want it to happen, but let me say that an armed force is here in order to do its job properly. And to do its job properly, it must be allowed to train interoperably and to use its assets to the maximum possible in order to gain experience,” he said.

Secretary Teodoro also outlined that the CADC is a convergence of different strategies to give a more holistic approach in dealing with critical socio-economic factors like food security, energy sustainability, and environmental resilience. He also instructed officials to focus and optimize resource allocation and maximize the effectiveness of defense initiatives.

The defense chief urged stakeholders to unite behind the CADC. He further reiterated the importance of collective action in safeguarding the country’s future.

“I encourage all the Armed Forces members and the Defense Department to focus on what you are supposed to do rather than focus on things that are not within your core competence," he said.

"Focus is the job right now and the mission of the Department of National Defense — on defense hardening, on managerial support systems... on the personnel complement. And complementarily, the hardening and agility of our defense ecosystem with the five organizations under our department... In this we will need a lot of advocacy, a lot of trust building with each and every member of the Philippine society,” Secretary Teodoro concluded.