Ex-Philippine Foreign Secretary Albert Del Rosario Dies at 83

Albert del Rosario, a prominent Filipino diplomat and government official, passed away on Tuesday, April 18, 2023, at the age of 83. The Department of Foreign Affairs (DFA) confirmed his death while en route to San Francisco. Del Rosario had served as the Secretary of State under the administration of Benigno Aquino.

Del Rosario was born on November 14, 1939, in Manila, Philippines. He was the son of a prominent businessman and politician, Jose del Rosario, who served as a senator and ambassador to the United States. Albert del Rosario graduated from Ateneo de Manila University with a degree in economics and later earned his MBA from Harvard Business School.

After completing his education, del Rosario worked in the private sector for several years before joining the Philippine government in 1986. He served as the Undersecretary of the Department of Trade and Industry under President Corazon Aquino’s administration. In 1992, he was appointed as the Philippine Ambassador to the United States by President Fidel Ramos.

During his tenure as ambassador, del Rosario played a crucial role in strengthening the relationship between the Philippines and the United States. He worked tirelessly to promote economic cooperation and trade between the two countries. His efforts led to the signing of several bilateral agreements, including the Philippines-United States Partnership for Growth.

In 2006, del Rosario was appointed as the Secretary of Foreign Affairs by President Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo. He served in this position until 2010 when he resigned to run for public office. During his time as Secretary of Foreign Affairs, del Rosario played a pivotal role in shaping Philippine foreign policy. He worked to enhance the country’s relations with its neighbors in Southeast Asia and played a key role in resolving territorial disputes in the South China Sea.

After leaving government service, del Rosario continued to be an influential figure in Philippine politics. He was a vocal advocate for good governance and transparency and was often called upon to provide expert commentary on current events. He also served as the chairman of the board of trustees of the Asian Institute of Management.

Del Rosario’s passing was met with an outpouring of grief and tributes from his colleagues and friends in the diplomatic community. Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte expressed his condolences and praised del Rosario’s contributions to the country. “He was a true patriot who dedicated his life to serving the Filipino people,” Duterte said in a statement.

Former US President Barack Obama also paid tribute to del Rosario, calling him a “tireless advocate for peace and progress.” In a statement, Obama said, “Albert del Rosario was a true statesman and a dear friend. His legacy will live on through the countless lives he touched and the positive impact he made on the world.”

Del Rosario’s passing is a great loss to the Philippines and the international community. His contributions to Philippine foreign policy and his commitment to public service will be remembered for years to come.