NAIA Terminal 2, Pasay City
March 23, 2017

President Rodrigo Roa Duterte gave a statement on his state visits to the Republic of the Union of Myanmar and to the Kingdom of Thailand and answered questions from the media on his arrival at the Ninoy Aquino International Airport (NAIA) Terminal 2 in Pasay City.

“I return from official visits to Myanmar and Thailand with a renewed sense of optimism for the future of our relations,” said the President as he outlined the accomplishments of the Philippine delegation during the state visits.

“In Myanmar, I held fruitful and productive discussions with President Htin Kyaw on how to further deepen and broaden bilateral cooperation,” continued President Duterte and spoke about how both sides agreed to intensify two-way trade and investments; collaborate on law enforcement in order to address terrorism, extremism, piracy and drug trafficking; cooperate in human resource development; and recognize the importance of accessible and affordable food through the signing of a memorandum of understanding on food security and agricultural cooperation.

The President also talked about the Philippines’ gift of USD 300,000 to the government of Myanmar as humanitarian aid for the Rakhine region.

“In Thailand, I had a warm and open discussions with Prime Minister Prayut Chan-o-cha,” said President Duterte and elaborated on how both the Philippines and Thailand agreed to expand cooperation on security against terrorism, extremism and illegal drugs; affirmed intensified collaboration in the areas of military, trade and investment, tourism, agriculture, science and technology, energy, education, among others; and signed agreements in the fields of science and technology, cooperation on swamp and dairy buffalo production, and on tourism cooperation from 2017 to 2022.

The President also spoke of his meeting with officials of the Charoen Pokphand Group, which committed two billion dollars in a five-year investment expansion that will largely focus on the Visayas and Mindanao region and spoke with officers of other Thai business groups where he sought more investments for the Philippines.

“On both visits, the South China Sea was discussed. We stressed the need to maintain peace and stability in the region. We underscored respect for freedom of navigation and overflight rights in the interest of all countries and outside the region,” said President Duterte and added that there is a need for a full and effective implementation of the Declaration of the Conduct of Parties in the South China Sea and expressed his determination to complete the framework of the Code of Conduct in 2017.

The state visits to Myanmar and Thailand of President Duterte completes the introductory tour of the Philippine delegation to member countries of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) as part of the Philippine chairmanship of the ASEAN 2017 summits.

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