By Camille A. Aguinaldo
PRESIDENT Rodrigo R. Duterte will hold bilateral talks with Chinese President Xi Jinping on the sidelines of the Bo’ao Forum in China, Foreign Affairs Undersecretary Manuel A.J. Teehankee said Friday.
“Also on April 10, the President will hold a bilateral meeting with the Chinese President Xi Jinping to discuss ways to further enhance the bilateral relationship between the Philippines and China,” Mr. Teehankee said at a press briefing in Malacañang.
“The two leaders will also discuss ways to collaborate on jointly addressing pressing issues as well as common threats such as violent extremism and terrorism and cross-border traffic of illegal narcotics,” he added.
Mr. Teehankee said Mr. Duterte will also visit Hong Kong to meet with the Filipino community after his meeting with the Chinese President.
Mr. Duterte is scheduled to leave the country on Monday, Apr. 9, to attend the Bo’ao forum in China’s southern Hainan province. This will be his third visit to China since he became president.
The forum, an international dialogue platform for Asia-Pacific countries, was first organized in 1998 on the watch of then Philippine president Fidel V. Ramos, Australian prime minister Bob Hawke, and Japanese prime minister Morihiro Hosokawa.
Mr. Teehankee said Mr. Duterte will also address the gathering’s opening plenary on Apr. 10. Leaders from Austria, Mongolia, Pakistan, the Netherlands as well as the United Nations and International Monetary Fund will take part too in the said plenary.
Mr. Duterte will return to Manila on April 12.