PRESIDENT Duterte said he does not believe China’s involvement with the National Grid Corporation (NGCP) would lead to its “spying” on the Philippines.
He asked what reasons China would have to spy on the country or even shut down the grid system. He said as far as he knows, China is helping the Philippines improve its power distribution in the country.
“I will ask China now. I’d like to address myself, respectfully to President Xi, what could be the reason because I do not believe that they will do. But if there is, what could be the reason for you to cut?” he said in a taped interview aired yesterday by GMA Network’s “Unang Hirit” TV program.
The President issued the statements amid concerns that China can shut down the country’s power grid through the State Grid Corp of China which has 40 percent stake in the NGCP.
On spying concerns, he said the Chinese has long been “listening to us” and he knows about it because he has talked with the Chinese.
Duterte said China has even offered to give him a mobile phone that it said cannot be hacked. He said he refused because he does not want people to think that he is keeping secrets.
“Right now they are listening to us, satellites, without using the grid, the spies, they know, I know because I have talked to him,” he said.
The Senate is set to hold a public hearing this month on the implication on national security of China having control over the country’s transmission assets, and the operation aspect.