DTI chief: Philippine economy gains from better ties with China, Russia

MANILA, April 25 -- The Duterte administration’s push to achieve better relations with countries like China and Russia has brought gains to the Philippine economy, Trade Secretary Ramon Lopez said.

During the 2nd Dutertenomics Forum at the Conrad Manila on Tuesday, Lopez noted that the country received purchase commitments from China and Russia after President Rodrigo Duterte voiced his intention to be friends with these two nations.

This followed with the Chief Executive’s state visit to China in October last year.

The meeting of President Duterte and Chinese President Xi Jinping resulted in commitments of boosting economic cooperation and partnership between Manila and Beijing.

For instance, Lopez said that China now sends technical experts to the country whenever there are issues on products that do not meet the international standards. Unlike before, China immediately banned the products and suspended the exporters to ship products in their borders if there were problems on standards.

To date, the two countries signed purchase deals of agricultural and industrial products worth USD1.7 billion, which translates to increasing Philippine exports to Chinese markets.

Likewise, Russia pledged to purchase USD2.5 billion worth of agricultural products from the Philippines.

Most of the goods that will be imported by Russia from the Philippines are currently being sourced from South America.

Next month, President Duterte is set to visit Russia.

Moreover, Lopez stressed that the better diplomatic ties with China and Russia opened more opportunities for Filipinos like job generation and access to new and large markets.

“Creating more opportunities to empower Filipino is what Dutertenomics is all about,” the trade chief said. (PNA)

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