President RodrigoRoaDuterte returned to Manila on Sundayafter productive talks with Chinese President Xi Jinping and Premier Li Keqiang in Beijing, People’s Republic of China.
The President’sfive-day official visit, his fifth to China, opened with a bilateral meeting with President Xi on 29 August 2019 at theDiaoyutaiGuest House.
The two Leaders reaffirmed the longstanding friendship between the Philippines and China andrenewedtheircommitment tofurther enhanceour countries’Comprehensive Strategic Cooperation.
Presidents Duterte and Xi had candid andopen exchangeofviews on the South China Sea/West Philippine Sea, including the Arbitral Award which the Philippines won in 2016.
Acknowledging the importance of aCode of Conduct(COC)in theSouth China Seato regional peace and stability, the two Presidents expressed determination to fast track negotiations for the conclusion ofan effective and substantive COC at the soonest possible time.
President Duterteconveyedthe Philippines’ commitmentto enhanceASEAN’s engagement with China duringour country’sstewardship oftheASEAN-ChinaDialogue.
The Presidentalsomet Premier Li Keqiang andreiterated the Philippines’ strong resolve to further expand economic ties and people-to-people exchanges with China for mutual benefit.Helikewisestressed the importance of completing infrastructure projects with China with favorable financing arrangements.
Premier Li, for his part, stated that the Philippines is an important partner of China in Southeast Asia and that China is ready to step up cooperation in support of the “Build, Build, Build” Program to deliver win-win outcomes.
A total of six (6) agreements were signed during the visit,covering cooperation in the areas of education, science and technology, finance, and customs, among others.
The President also metwithChinese and Filipinoinvestors,includingkey business leaders in thePhilippine construction industry,during the Philippines-China Business Forumorganized by the Department of Trade and Industry.
The Presidentlikewisegracedin Beijingthe Opening Ceremony of the 2019 FIBA Basketball Word Cup as special guest of President Xi, the only foreign leader invited to the event.
In Guangzhou,Guangdong Province,the President was welcomed byChinese Vice President WangQishanand top political leaders ofthe province.
The Presidentthen witnessed the game ofGilasPilipinasagainst Italy in the 2019 FIBA Basketball World CupattheFoshan International Sports and Cultural Center in Foshan.