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Philippines: Open for Business

Philippines: Open for Business

President Aquino and President Hu had a fruitful meeting. H.E. Wu Bangguo, Chairman of the Standing Committee of the
National People’s Congress and H.E. Wen Jiabao, Premier of the State Council, met with President Aquino respectively. The
leaders shared a positive assessment of the development of Philippines-China relations in the last 36 years since the establishment of diplomatic relations on 9 June 1975. They reiterated their commitment to jointly pursue a long-term & stable relationship of strategic cooperation on the basis of mutual respect, equality & mutual benefit. Our Congratulations.

Various agreements were signed. This will further strengthen bilateral cooperation in the fields of, among others, trade, economic and technical cooperation, tourism, nautical connectivity, media, sports, culture and information. Peace & development between these neighbors have truly been bound by timehonored friendship, vibrant trade and sustained people-to-people contacts over the centuries. Yet the two leaders committed themselves to continue strengthening the strategic and cooperative relationship for they realized the importance of the existing Philippines-China bilateral dialogue mechanisms in enhancing understanding, broadening cooperation and striving for a stronger
relationship.

High-level exchanges, visits and meetings between leaders, cabinet members, legislators, judicial officials, defense and military officials and local government officials will continue to expand. On the social side more exchanges among youth, entrepreneurs, educators, media practitioners and artists, among others, will strengthen better understanding, mutual trust and awareness.

The 5 years Philippines-China Development Program for Trade and Economic Cooperation (2012-2016) will serve as the
blueprint for future efforts in the following sectors: agriculture and fishery, infrastructure and public works, mining, energy, information and communications technology (ICT), processing and manufacturing, tourism, engineering services and forestry.

By the year 2016, they both want to expand the volume of bilateral trade to an attainable target of US$60 billion [two-way
trade]. This will be only possible if they strive to improve the trade structure, promote a more vigorous exchange of investments and explore new areas of economic cooperation in the fields of, among others, new and renewable energy, shipping and ports. China will support the Public Private Partnership (PPP) program of the PHL government. They would encourage its qualified companies to participate in the competitive bidding processes of the program. China was appreciated for its development assistance to various economic, agricultural and infrastructure projects in the Philippines.

In pipeline is the establishment of a nautical highway that will infuse new energy to bilateral trade and economic activities, further complementing and supporting the connectivity between ASEAN and China.

Both countries have noticed an increasing number of twinning arrangements between their cities and province. These are now considered as bridges of promoting mutual understanding and friendship between the two countries and peoples.

2012-2013 was declared as the “Philippines- China Years of Friendly Exchanges”. Targeting doubling of two-way tourist arrivals goal to two (2) million by 2016, from the present 1 Million. {This will be difficult due to the strict policy of Visas for Chinese nationals to enter the Philippines. Ed.}

“Mutual Legal Assistance in Criminal Matters” must be given special attention. Both countries have active judicial and law-enforcement exchanges and cooperation through existing bilateral agreements, so the two leaders agreed to fulfill the legal procedures to expedite their entry. Begin negotiations at an early date for a bilateral agreement on Transfer of Sentenced
Persons. They reaffirmed their commitment to strengthening cooperation in combating transnational crimes, including drug and human trafficking.

Despite the SPRATLYS issue, they believed that the maritime disputes should not affect the broader picture of friendship and
cooperation between the two countries. They committed to address the disputes through peaceful dialogue, to maintain continued regional peace, security, stability and an environment conducive to economic progress.

They would respect and abide by the Declaration on the Conduct of Parties in the South China Sea signed by China and the ASEAN member countries in 2002. The two leaders expressed satisfaction with the progress of ASEAN-China relations in the past 20 years and affirmed the principle of ASEAN centrality in the discussions on the nature and shape of a future regional
architecture in Asia.

Further strengthening cooperation various regional and multilateral organizations such as the U.N., APEC, Asia-Europe Meeting, World Trade Organization, and United Nations Climate Change Conference.

They also agreed that the Joint Action Plan for Strategic Cooperation signed by the two sides on 29 October 2009 will continue to guide cooperation in all fields. The Philippines reaffirmed its adherence to the one China policy

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