Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte visit to China
Duterte will meet his Chinese counterpart Xi Jinping, Premier Li Keqiang, and top legislator Zhang Dejiang, according to China’s Foreign Ministry.
“This is a historic visit, and presents an opportunity for relations between China and the Philippines to restart on a fresh, more positive footing,” said Foreign Minister Wang Yi earlier on Tuesday.
Applauding Duterte’s commitment to improving bilateral ties and voicing support for dialogue and cooperation between the two nations, Wang said the visit accords with the national interests of the Philippines and the wishes of its people.
Relations between Beijing and Manila suffered after the Philippine government, under Duterte’s predecessor Benigno Aquino, initiated a unilateral arbitration to challenge China’s sovereignty over the South China Sea.
While the retrogression in ties undermined the interests of the Philippine people and regional stability, the historical visit of Duterte will be a new beginning in the China-Philippine relationship, Wang said.
“We are fully prepared to open our arms of friendship and extend our hand of cooperation to the people of the Philippines,” Wang said.
“We are confident that this visit will be a success that will not only put the China-Philippine relationship back on the track of normal growth, but also open up new vistas for mutually beneficial cooperation,” he added.