Prime Minister’s Office, Putrajaya
28 February 2014
President Benigno S. Aquino III and Prime Minister Dato Sri Mohd Najib Bin Tun Hadji Abdul Razak jointly spoke before the Malaysian and Philippine press at the Prime Minister’s Office in Putrajaya after their bilateral talks.
During his speech, President Aquino expressed his utmost gratitude to the Malaysian government for facilitating and hosting the peace talks in Mindanao. He appreciated the significant role of Malaysia in the conception and success of the Bangsamoro Framework Agreement. With this, he invited the Prime Minister to attend and witness the signing of the final and comprehensive agreement in March of this year.
The President also thanked Prime Minister Dato Sri Najib for Malaysia’s continued assistance after the onslaught of Typhoon Yolanda (Haiyan).
President Aquino told the press that among the topics of discussion with the Prime Minister is the possibility of adapting Islamic banking in the Philippines especially in Mindanao and the corresponding training for the endeavor. Also, they talked about the enhancement of security forces relations, skills training for the people in the Bangsamoro region, and potential business investments in Mindanao.
On the other hand, the Prime Minister highlighted the strong bilateral trade between both countries that reached to $4.5 billion. He said that it could probably increase in the coming years because of the growing Philippine economy.
He also stated the proposed establishment of a hotline between the front liners of Philippines and Malaysia in support of President Aquino’s note on the enhanced security partnerships.
Lastly, Prime Minister Najib expressed his desire to visit the Philippines in March to attend the signing of the Comprehensive Bangsamoro Framework Agreement.
The leaders both stated that they are confident in the continuous development of a positive mutual relationship between Malaysia and the Philippines because of its common goals and aspirations in ensuring economic stability in the ASEAN region.
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