PH, China firm up economic deals
Ahead of the upcoming visit of Chinese President Xi Jinping this month, officials from the Philippines and China have firmed up the agreements to be signed by the two sides to strengthen economic cooperation between Beijing and Manila.
The Department of Finance said in a statement that top Filipino and Chinese officials met in Davao City and signed three bilateral documents ahead of Xi’s visit: The exchange of letters for the feasibility study of the Davao River Bridge (Bucana) project; 50-million renminbi grant for the supply of law enforcement-related materials/equipment to the Philippines; and the $1-million grant for Typhoon “Vinta” victims last year.
All three documents were signed by Chinese Ambassador to the Philippines Zhao Jianhua on behalf of China, while the Philippine side was represented during the signing by Philippine Ambassador to China Jose Santiago Sta. Romana and Defense Undersecretary Ricardo Jalad.
Also, Finance Secretary Carlos G. Dominguez III, who led the Philippine side, said that a total of at least five agreements to be signed with China on the sidelines of Xi’s visit were “on track.”
“The agreements cover loan and guarantee accords, economic and technical cooperation, support for the feasibility studies on the Philippines’ infrastructure projects, and promoting cooperation on key ‘Build, Build, Build’ projects in Mindanao,” the DOF said.
Dominguez said he was hopeful that their meeting would “continue expanding the mutually beneficial economic, trade and investment cooperation” between the Philippines and China.
Meanwhile, China’s State Councilor and Foreign Minister Wang Yi, who led the Chinese delegation, highlighted the need to strengthen economic cooperation in order to “[realize] the long-term stable friendship between our two countries.”
The DOF quoted Wang as saying that the bilateral trade between China and the Philippines jumped by more than 500 percent during the first half such that “the economic cooperation between our two countries now is in a good position.” —BEN O. DE VERA
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