27 January 2016
President Benigno S. Aquino III offered a toast in honor of Their Majesties Emperor Akihito and Empress Michiko of Japan in a State Dinner at Malacañan Palace.
In his brief remarks, President Aquino shared that Japan has been a “consistent, able and trustworthy partner” who has helped in the progress of the Filipino people, citing that Japan is the Philippines’ top trading partner in 2014 and the largest source of active Official Development Assistance (ODA) and Investment Promotion Agency (IPA) approved foreign investments in the same year.
The President added that Japan has been a vital partner of the Philippines’ peace process including the development of Mindanao, as well as in the enhancement of the country’s maritime and disaster management capabilities.
“This visit comes at an auspicious time as we celebrate the 60th anniversary of our nations and your presence today indeed emphasizes the depth of the friendship between our two nations,” he said.
On the other hand, Emperor Akihito, who spoke in Japanese, replied that under President Aquino’s distinguished leadership, the Philippines has been achieving steady development as a vital member of the Asian community.
His Majesty added that it is in their deepest hope that their visit will deepen the mutual understanding and friendly relations between Japan and the Philippines.
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