Villamor Air Base, Pasay City
5 January 2023
President Ferdinand R. Marcos Jr. concluded his inaugural State Visit to the People’s Republic of China on a high note as productive meetings and bilateral deals wrapped up his first Presidential foreign visit this year.
“I recognize how China’s development has positively impacted our relationship with our Chinese friends, especially considering the Philippines’ ties with China as a close neighbor and important bilateral partner,” President Marcos Jr. said in his arrival statement at the Villamor Air Base in Pasay City.
President Marcos Jr. summed up details of his discussions with President Xi Jinping and other Chinese officials, which were focused on the overall state of bilateral relations between the Philippines and China.
Among those discussed include mutual cooperation in areas concerning agriculture, energy, infrastructure, trade and investment, science and technology, and people-to-people ties. The President added that the visit served as an opportunity for both leaders to exchange views on several issues that affect peace, stability and development in the region and the world.
During the three-day State Visit, the President secured a total of 14 government deals with China that are aimed at broadening the two nations’ bilateral ties in many vital areas such as the sectors of agriculture, infrastructure, development cooperation, maritime security, tourism, among others.
Other highlights of President Marcos Jr.’s meeting with President Xi were discussions on the West Philippine Sea, where the Chief Executive described their meeting being ‘in-depth and frank.’ He said that he emphasized his administration’s intent to pursue an independent foreign policy with the Philippines being more than willing to cooperate whenever possible in the pursuit of regional peace while securing the two countries’ national interest.
“We agreed that the maritime issues between the two countries do not compromise the entirety of our relations, but acknowledged that they remain a significant concern and priority for the Philippines and the region,” he noted.
The President also conveyed his deepest gratitude to the government of China for the invitation and the chance to reaffirm and deepen the friendship between the Philippines and China, and to explore other mutually beneficial avenues of cooperation.
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