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Palace: Xi’s visit seen to boost PH-China ties

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By Prince Golez

China’s President Xi Jinping’s two-day state visit to the Philippines intends to deepen the relationship shared between the two Asian neighbors, according to Malacanang.

“The Philippines and China’s shared hopes for their citizens continue to pave the way for closer bonds between the two nations,” Presidential Spokesperson Salvador Panelo said in a statement Monday.

“Owing to President Rodrigo Roa Duterte’s cautious, pragmatic and diplomatic yet independent foreign policy, we anticipate more opportunities to forge better cooperation and friendship with China,” he added.

Xi will arrive in the Philippines on Tuesday and will stay in the country until November 21.

Panelo said the Duterte administration appreciates the Chinese government’s continuing efforts to maintain peace and stability in the region, particularly on South China Sea dispute.

“Indeed, amity solves international disputes and would even make both countries stronger allies against threats to security, including terrorism, violent extremism, criminality, and the drug menace,” the Palace official said

He also stressed that Xi’s visit to the Philippines, the first of a Chinese president in 13 years, will further strengthen the country’s trade relationship with the East Asian nation.

“The story of the Philippines’ relationship with China dates back in the pre-Spanish times. Since then, Filipinos and Chinese always shared a special partnership as traders and entrepreneurs,” Panelo said.

“We consider our country’s long-lasting friendship with China and the presence of Chinese and Chinese-Filipinos in the country as integral parts of our own growth and progress,” the spokesman concluded.