Philippine to boost ties with China

Added On October 18, 2016

Philippine President says his country expects to boost traditional friendship with China and further bilateral trade and economic cooperation.

That's according to an interview he gave to China's state media just a few days before his state visit to China, which will start on Tuesday. Here's more from the interview.

Duterte says the visit will bring a better understanding of China. 

He also lauded China's generosity of helping others as a major player of the international community. 

Soundbite: RODRIGO DUTERTE,Philippine President: 

“What I see is what China has been doing to other countries. For example Africa, it was generous to offer to build the railways and everything. We would like to go there to make friends, but not really to ask for money but for help. If we can have the things that you have given to other countries by way of assistance we also would like to be a part of it and to be a part of the greater plans of China about the whole of Asia, particularly Southeast Asia.”  

The Philippine president also expressed his desire to participate in the Beijing-proposed Belt and Road Initiative, as his nation is short of funding for infrastructure such as railways and seaports.  

In terms of the South China Sea issue, Duterte said he prefers negotiation to confrontation. 

Soundbite: RODRIGO DUTERTE,Philippine President:

“There is no sense in going to the war. There is even no sense fighting over a body of water. Of course there are entitlements to which the Philippines is entitled to due to the judgment. But we will not insist on it to the point of antagonism. We prefer to talk. Not only because China and the Philippines are good friends, but because there are so many Chinese in the Philippines. 

There are some 2 million ethnic Chinese living and working in the Philippines.The Philippine President also mentioned his grandfather is Chinese.