November 24, 2017, 12:46 pm
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PH scores deals in 4 bilats

PRESIDENT Duterte talked of cooperation on trade, security and agriculture during his bilateral talks with the prime ministers of Japan, South Korea, India and Russia on Monday night.

Duterte, in his meeting with Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi, talked of increasing investments from India, particularly cheaper medicine.

He said the Philippines would be happy to see more Indian firms invest in manufacturing affordable medicine.

He said he is considering sending Finance Secretary Carlos Dominguez III, Agriculture Secretary Emmanuel Piñol, Trade Secretary Ramon Lopez and Health Secretary Francisco Duque III to India to encourage such investments.

He also lauded the durability and efficiency of Indian-made Mahindra cars, which he said are being used now by the Philippine National Police (PNP).

Indian Prime Minister Modi thanked Duterte for the Philippines’ hospitality and for including the music of Indian artist Rama Hari during the opening ceremony and gala night of the 31st Asean Summit.

Mori also invited Duterte to attend a summit hosted by India in January 2018, to which the President replied, “In God’s will, I will be there.”

Before the meeting ended, Duterte and Mori witnessed the exchange of memoranda of understanding on defense, agriculture and related fields, and foreign services; and cooperation on micro, small and medium enterprises.

In his meeting with South Korean President Moon Jae-in, Duterte urged more Korean investors in manufacturing, automotive, food production, processing, agribusiness, electronics and energy.

He said he wants Philippine-Korean ties to be strengthened, as he acknowledged the increased Philippine importation of personal care and other organic products, food and seafood, garments and chemicals and other electronic parts.

Moon, for his part, expressed hope that he could enhance Korea-Asean relations “to the highest level,” as well as Philippine-Korean relations. He said the Philippines has been South Korea’s “long-time friend.”

“Mr. President, I ask for your attention and support so that the Koreans who visit and reside in the Philippines can have a safe and enjoyable stay,” Moon said, citing that at least 1.5 million Koreans have visited the Philippines as tourists in the past years.

“I will also pay close attention and make my best efforts to ensure that the Filipinos visiting and living in Korea can be safe and comfortable,” Moon said, expressing hope that Filipinos would also visit Korea when it hosts the PyeongChang Winter Olympic Games in February next year.

In his meeting with Russian Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev, Duterte assured that the Philippines is willing to expand relations particularly in area of trade.

Duterte said he intends to set up a place in Moscow where Filipinos can showcase their products.

He also thanked Russia for the weapons that it gave that were used in the military operations against local terrorists in Marawi City.

Duterte also assured Medvedev that Russian nationals Yuri Kirdyushkin and Anastasia Novopashina, who are currently detained in the Philippines due to drug-related charges, would “get a fair trial and that they will be detained in a comfortable house.”

Medvedev, for his part, said Russia is willing to boost cooperation in the fight against terrorism and extremism, adding that his country is prepared to continue to supply the Philippines with more weapons to maintain peace and order.

Duterte and Medvedev witnessed the signing of nine agreements. They are the Treaty on Mutual Legal Assistance in Criminal Matters, Treaty on Extradition, Memorandum of Understanding on Cooperation between the Department of Energy and the State Atomic Energy Corporation “Rosatom” of the Russian Federation, and the Memorandum of Understanding on Cooperation in the Field of Mass Communications.

The Memorandum of Understanding on the Development of Cooperation in Transport Education, Memorandum of Understanding between the Commission on Higher Education of the Republic of the Philippines and the Ministry of Education and Science of the Russian Federation, and the Memorandum of Understanding between the Intellectual Property Office of the Philippines and the Federal Service for Intellectual Property of the Russian Federation.

The Agreement on Cooperation between the Commission on Audit of the Republic of the Philippines and the Accounts Chamber of the Russian Federation; and the Agreement of Cooperation and Partnership between Philippine company Vi Holding LLC and Russian company Global Ferronickel Holdings Inc.

Also on Monday night, Duterte met with Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe, whom he  thanked for Japan’s support during the Marawi armed conflict and the turnover of a trainer aircraft, machineries and radar to the Philippines.

He also thanked Abe for making it possible for him to have an audience with Japanese Emperor Akihito and Empress Michiko during his official visit in Japan last month.
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