THE Philippines and China have agreed to establish a joint coast guard committee on maritime cooperation during President Rodrigo Duterte’s four-day state visit in Beijing, China.
The Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) on the Establishment of a Joint Coastal Guard Committee on Maritime Cooperation was among the agreements signed by Filipino and Chinese officials at the Great Hall of the People right after the expanded bilateral talks.
“The signing of cooperation agreement between the coast guards of the two countries means that the two countries will start cooperation on maritime affairs,” said Vice Foreign Minister Liu Zhemin in a news briefing.
“And you have noticed that the Coast Guard departments have signed a cooperation agreement. This in itself means that the two countries have started the maritime cooperation,” he added.
Chinese Vice Foreign Minister Liu Zhenmin also announced that Chinese President Xi Jinping has lifted all travel advisories against traveling to the Philippines.
“President Xi Jinping has announced that China will lift the travel advisories issued a few years ago to Chinese citizens traveling to the Philippines. And this lift will encourage more Chinese citizens to travel in the Philippines,” Liu said in a press briefing following the signing of 13 bilateral cooperation agreements at the Great Hall of the People.
Duterte is currently on a state visit to China. His visit ends on Friday, Oct. 21.
Amid tensions over the West Philippine Sea dispute, China had issued travel advisories to its citizens planning to travel to the Philippines because of a bomb threat at the Chinese Embassy in Manila and the presence of criminal gangs in September 2014.
Liu also said that China has reissued permits to 27 companies exporting tropical fruits to China, mango included.
The two leaders also signed several documents.
These include MOU on Production Capacity and Investment Cooperation; Agreement on Economic and Technological Cooperation between the Governments of China and the Philippines; MOU on Strengthening Trade, Investment and Economic Cooperation; MOU on Drafting China-Philippines Economic Cooperation Development Plans and the Tourism; MOU Implementation Plan 2017-2022;MOU on the Lists of Transportation and Infrastructure Cooperation Projects; MOU on Financing Cooperation between China’s EXIMBANK (Export-Import Bank of China) and the Department of the Treasury of the Philippines; MOU on Agricultural Cooperation Action Plan 2017-2019 and the Protocol on Cooperation between PDEA of the Philippines and the Narcotics Control Bureau of the Ministry of Public Security of China; MOU on Supporting Conduct of Feasibility Studies for Major Projects; MOU on News Information Exchange Training and for Other Purposes; and MOU on Cooperation on Animal and Plant Inspection and Quarantine.