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Xi Jinping Holds Talks with President Rodrigo Duterte of the Philippines Both Sides Agree to Jointly Push China-Philippines Strategic and Cooperative Relations Dedicated to Peace and Development for Healthy and Stable Development

On October 20, 2016, President Xi Jinping held talks at the Great Hall of the People with President Rodrigo Duterte of the Philippines. Both sides agreed to comply with the expectations of the two peoples and push China-Philippines relations for comprehensive improvement and greater progress so as to benefit the two peoples on the basis of the fundamental and common interests of both countries.

Xi Jinping pointed out that China and the Philippines are neighbors across the sea, and the two peoples are like blood brothers. China and the Philippines both are developing countries, and solidarity, mutual assistance, cooperation and development are our common goals. Despite the ups and downs between us, the foundation of good-neighborly friendship and willingness to cooperate remain unchanged. China attaches great importance to bilateral relations and is willing to make joint efforts with the Philippine side to constantly enhance political mutual trust, deepen mutually beneficial cooperation, properly manage differences, and be good-neighborly and friendly partners featuring close emotional ties, mutual assistance in cooperation and joint progress in development.

Xi Jinping stressed that to open up a better future of China-Philippines relations, we need to summarize the past and learn from it. Both sides should insist on good-neighborly and friendly cooperation. China and the Philippines boast generations of friendship, and there is no reason for hostility and rivalry. Anything that is conducive to China-Philippines good-neighborly friendship deserves absolute and complete efforts from both countries. Both sides should stick to properly handling differences. During most of the time since the establishment of diplomatic relations, both sides have properly managed differences through bilateral dialogues and consultations on the South China Sea issue, which is a political wisdom and a successful practice worth passing down as well as an important consensus foundation for the healthy and stable development of bilateral relations. As long as both countries adhere to friendly dialogues and consultations, we can exchange candid views on all issues, well manage differences, carry out cooperation, and shelve disputes that are difficult to agree on for a while. The two sides should join hands to pursue common development and bring more tangible benefits to the two peoples.

Xi Jinping put forward four proposals on the future development of China-Philippines relations:

First, both sides should strengthen political mutual trust. The Chinese people love peace and good-neighborliness. China sticks to the path of peaceful development and upholds its good-neighborly and friendly policy of being good neighbors and partners. China firmly safeguards national sovereignty while upholding peaceful settlement of disputes. Both sides should strengthen high-level exchanges, and give play to the leading role of high-level strategic communication in the development of bilateral relations. Both sides should take this visit as an opportunity to promote comprehensive exchanges and cooperation between governments, political parties, parliaments, localities and others of both countries.

Second, both sides should conduct practical cooperation. In order to comprehensively integrate the two countries' development strategies, China is willing to work with the Philippines to intensify cooperation within the "Belt and Road" framework and discuss to achieve mutual benefit and win-win results. China stands ready to actively participate in the Philippines' infrastructure construction in areas including railway, urban rail transit, highway and port, so as to bring benefits to the local people. Both sides should enhance cooperation in law enforcement and defense. Supporting the new Philippine government's efforts in drug control, counter-terrorism and fighting criminals, the Chinese side is willing to carry out relevant cooperation with the country. The two countries should expand cooperation in economy, trade and investment. China is willing to encourage Chinese enterprises to increase investment in the Philippines and aid the better and more rapid growth of the Philippine economy. We should deepen cooperation in agriculture and poverty-alleviation. The Chinese side stands ready to help the Philippines to improve its capacity of agricultural production and rural development and back up cooperation between fishery enterprises of the two countries.

Third, both sides should advance non-governmental exchanges. China will actively encourage Chinese tourists to travel to the Philippines, reinforce bilateral exchanges in such fields as education, news, culture and media and boost regional cooperation. China proposes that the two countries should launch a series of activities next year to mark the 600th anniversary of King of Sulu's first visit to China.

Fourth, both sides should intensify cooperation in regional and multilateral affairs. As two developing countries, China and the Philippines should jointly advance the democratization of international relations and push forward the international order towards a more just and reasonable direction. The Chinese side is willing to enhance coordination with the Philippines within multilateral frameworks including the UN and the APEC and safeguard the interests of developing countries. China stands ready to, together with the Philippine side, push for greater development of China-ASEAN relations and East Asia cooperation.

Rodrigo Duterte said that China is a great country. The ever-lasting friendship between the Philippines and China is unshakable and China's tremendous achievements are admirable. At present, the development strategies of the two countries are highly compatible and there is huge growth space for bilateral cooperation. The Philippine side is devoted to actively developing bilateral relations and strengthening cooperation with China, which will benefit the two peoples. The Philippines appreciates China's strong support in its economic and social development, and agrees to intensify bilateral exchanges at all levels, boost in-depth exchanges in national development and social governance and vigorously facilitate cooperation in economy, trade, investment, agriculture, science and technology, manufacturing, infrastructure, disaster alleviation and prevention, tourism, aviation, media, drug control, counter-terrorism, coast guard, people-to-people and cultural exchanges and other fields. It is hoped that the Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank (AIIB) could play a greater role in the Philippines' economic and social development. The Philippines is willing to push forward a better development of ASEAN-China relations and intensify coordination and cooperation in international and regional affairs.

Rodrigo Duterte emphasized that today's historic meeting has comprehensively improved and developed bilateral relations. This visit will certainly benefit the two peoples.

After the talks, the two heads of state jointly witnessed the signing of 13 bilateral cooperation documents covering economy, trade, investment, production capacity, agriculture, news, quality inspection, tourism, drug control, finance, coastguard, infrastructure construction and other areas.

Prior to the talks, Xi Jinping held a welcoming ceremony for Rodrigo Duterte at the square outside the East Gate of the Great Hall of the People. Vice Chairman of the Standing Committee of the National People's Congress Zhang Ping, State Councilor Yang Jiechi, State Councilor and Minister of Public Security Guo Shengkun, Vice Chairman of the National Committee of Chinese People's Political Consultative Conference Ma Biao and others were present.

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