Xi to elevate cooperation with PH during Manila visit
By Joyce Ann L. Rocamora
MANILA (Philippines News Agency) — Chinese President Xi Jinping on Monday said he is excited to visit the Philippines and looks forward to elevating the “all-round cooperation” of China and the Philippines during his meeting with President Rodrigo Duterte.
“I am visiting this time mainly to have in-depth discussions with President Duterte on how to elevate our all-round cooperation under new circumstances and make overall plan for greater progress in our relationship toward a higher level,” Xi said in a penned article sent to the media.
“There are a number of things we need to do if we are to achieve this goal,” he added.
Xi also underscored the need to deepen political mutual trust to sustain the growth of China-Philippine relations.
“China wishes to work with the Philippines to draw up blueprints for our future relations with a broader perspective and strengthen strategic communication on bilateral ties and major regional and international issues,” he said.
“We need to properly handle differences through friendly consultations, enhance dialogue and cooperation on maritime issues, and make the South China Sea a sea of peace, friendship and cooperation that truly benefits our two peoples,” he added.
Given the Philippines’ “unique geographical advantage,” Xi also noted the country is readily a “natural partner” in the Belt and Road Initiative.
“China wishes to work with the Philippines to renew the legacy of the ancient maritime Silk Road,” he said.
“China will work with the Philippines to enhance synergy between our strategies under the Belt and Road Initiative, deepen mutually beneficial cooperation in business, trade, infrastructure, agriculture, tourism and other fields, and assist the Philippines in carrying out more livelihood projects so that through our cooperation, the people of our two countries will have a stronger sense of fulfillment and happiness,” he noted.
For almost two years since the chief executive was elected, Xi noted that China and the Philippines ties have seen “a rainbow after the rain.”
Xi is in Manila from November 20 to 21 for a state visit under the invitation of President Duterte. His visit follows the several bilateral and multilateral meetings between him and President Duterte. (PNA)