|Li Keqiang Holds Talks with President Rodrigo Duterte of the Philippines|
Li Keqiang Holds Talks with President Rodrigo Duterte of the Philippines, Stressing to Adhere to Good-neighborliness and Friendliness and Deepening Practical Cooperation so as to Promote Sound and Steady Development of China-Philippines Relations
On November 15, 2017 local time, after attending the series of Leaders' Meetings on East Asia Cooperation, Premier Li Keqiang started his official visit to the Philippines. In that afternoon, Li Keqiang held talks with President Rodrigo Duterte of the Philippines at the Malacañan Palace in Manila.
Li Keqiang conveyed the warm greetings from President Xi Jinping to President Rodrigo Duterte. He expressed that exchanges between China and the Philippines enjoy a long history and that friendly cooperation is always the mainstream. Currently, relations between the two countries have been turned around as many difficulties had been overcome. Practice has proved that adherence to good-neighborliness and friendliness is in line with the fundamental interests of both sides, which meets the common aspirations of the two peoples and is an irresistible regional trend as well as a cornerstone of mutual development. China is willing to, together with the Philippines, grasp the right direction, consolidate bilateral friendship, deepen cooperation and make up the loss of time in the past so as to promote sound and steady development of China-Philippines relations.
Li Keqiang pointed out that China and the Philippines enjoy high economic complementarity and provide development opportunities and broad markets for each other. China is willing to step up efforts to align its development strategies with the Philippines and meet the demands of the Philippines to scale up infrastructure construction, give play to its own experience and advantages in equipment manufacturing and infrastructure construction, conduct capacity cooperation in infrastructure construction and formulate medium and long-term plans so as to give the markets of the two countries and the international community more confidence in long-term and stable cooperation between China and the Philippines. China is also willing to promote bilateral cooperation in trade and investment, information technology, agriculture, fishery, poverty alleviation and shantytowns transformation as well as strengthen strategic security cooperation with an aim to better cope with traditional and non-traditional security challenges. The two countries should give full play to the advantage of people-to-people and cultural affinity to strengthen cooperation in areas such as culture, science and technology, health care and youth and intensify communication and coordination in multilateral and regional cooperation mechanisms so as to boost bilateral and regional development.
Li Keqiang expressed his congratulations to the Philippines on the successful holding of the series of Leaders' Meetings on East Asia Cooperation and noted that China has always regarded the ASEAN as a priority in its diplomacy with neighboring countries and been committed to regional development and cooperation. As the Philippines will succeed the role as the country coordinator for China-ASEAN relations, China is willing to work with the Philippines to promote sustainable development of China-ASEAN relations and inject permanent impetus into regional peace and stability.
Rodrigo Duterte noted that Premier Li Keqiang's visit is the first one by a head of the Chinese government to the Philippines in the past ten years, which is of great significance. China is a good friend and a sincere cooperation partner of the Philippines. He thanked China for providing the Philippines with valuable support in infrastructure construction and safeguarding national security and welcomed Chinese enterprises to invest and start business in the Philippines. He hoped to draw from China's experience in development, strengthen bilateral cooperation in such fields as transportation facilities, telecommunication, and agriculture to make bilateral relations more dynamic and fruitful. The Philippines stands ready to play a better role as the country coordinator for ASEAN-China relations, so as to promote further development of ASEAN-China relations.
Both sides also conducted in-depth exchanges of views on international and regional issues of mutual concern.
After the talks, Li Keqiang and Rodrigo Duterte jointly witnessed the signing of over ten cooperative documents between China and the Philippines in infrastructure construction, production capacity, economic technology, finance as well as people-to-people and cultural exchanges.
Before the talks, Rodrigo Duterte held a grand welcoming ceremony for Premier Li Keqiang at the square outside the Malacañang Palace. The leaders of both countries walked together onto the review stand. The military band played the national anthems of the two countries and a salute of 19 guns was fired. Li Keqiang and Rodrigo Duterte reviewed the guard of honor and paid tribute to the national flags of the two countries. Philippine children waved the national flags of China and the Philippines and warmly welcomed Premier Li Keqiang's arrival in Chinese. Philippine folklore artists gave distinctive musical performances to express joy of having friends from afar.
In the afternoon the same day, Li Keqiang laid a wreath at Bantayog ni Jose Rizal.