MANILA — Premier Li Keqiang, in a signed article published on Nov 12, lauded the China-Philippines relationship as “seeing a rainbow after the storm and showing a good momentum across the board”.
In the article titled “Opening a new chapter of China-Philippines relations,” Premier Li said that since the complete turnaround in bilateral ties during Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte’s successful visit to China in October 2016, the two sides have developed closer high-level exchanges and have advanced practical cooperation on all fronts with fruitful results.
The article could be seen on major Philippine newspapers including the Manila Times and the Philippine Star.
The two sides have signed over 20 cooperation documents at the governmental or departmental levels and identified a number of priority infrastructure projects, which are making important progress, the article wrote.
The first 10 months of this year also saw China become the Philippines’ biggest trading partner, on the back of a surge in Philippine exports to China, it added.
The article also noted that the Chinese people and the Philippine people share a close bond and a long history of friendly association, which could be traced back to the periods of China’s Tang (618 A.D.-907 A.D.) and Song (960 A.D.-1279 A.D.) dynasties.
“In the context of our thousand-year friendly interactions, our differences are but brief interludes that will neither weaken our commitment to good neighborliness and friendship nor shake the solid foundation of our relations as good neighbors, good friends and good brothers,” it wrote.
To take bilateral relations forward, the Premier stressed three aspects, namely good faith and sincerity, results-oriented cooperation, as well as affinity between the two peoples.
“China will work with the Philippines to continue to properly handle the maritime issues through friendly bilateral consultation by giving full play to such mechanisms as the Bilateral Consultation Mechanism on the South China Sea and the Joint Coast Guard Committee on Maritime Cooperation,” the article wrote.
Premier Li arrived in Manila on Nov 12 for an official visit to the Philippines and for a series of leaders’ meetings on East Asian cooperation.
It is the first visit to the Philippines made by a Chinese Premier in 10 years.