PROC unveils ‘Xiplomacy’

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President Rodrigo Roa Duterte and President Xi Jinping of People's Republic of China pose for a photo prior to their expanded bilateral meeting at the Malacañan Palace on November 20, 2018. RICHARD MADELO/PRESIDENTIAL PHOTO

The Chinese leader paid state visits to Papua New Guinea (PNG), Brunei and the Philippines and attended the 26th Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) Economic Leaders’ Meeting.

State news agency Xinhua said the “strong messages China sent out during the week-long trip, particularly its commitment to opening-up and international collaboration, matter greatly in today’s world.”

Upgrading of relations

Chinese State Councilor and Foreign Minister Wang Yi said Xi’s visits to Brunei and the Philippines provided important opportunities for developing bilateral ties with them. The visits both featured raising diplomatic ties to a higher level of relationship to a strategic cooperative partnership with Brunei and a comprehensive strategic cooperation with the Philippines.

Wang said that it was stressed that China, with each of the two countries, shares extensive interests in the South China Sea, adding that the two countries agreed to resolve differences with China through friendly consultations, further maritime cooperation and push talks on a code of conduct in the South China Sea.

The two members of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) also agreed to work together with China towards greater progress in China-ASEAN cooperation.
Wang said Xi discussed with leaders of the two countries overall plans for aligning the Belt and Road Initiative (BRI) with their development strategies and deepening win-win cooperation, as he witnessed the signing of related agreements.

Friendship dominates

Xi also reached consensus with leaders of the two countries on closer people-to-people exchanges, and agreed to expand cooperation in sectors such as education, culture, sports, public health and tourism.

Wang said the fruitful results of Xi’s visits to the two countries showed again that friendship and cooperation dominate the relations between China and its neighbors while serving the interests of regional countries and their peoples.

Friendship, common development and proper management of differences will help make the South China Sea a sea of peace, friendship and cooperation, contributing to regional stability, growth and prosperity.

Open engagement

Xi concluded a seven-day Asia-Pacific trip which he extensively used to reaffirm China’s commitment to an open and inclusive cooperation and common development, as well as friendly relations in the region.

From 15 to 21 November, Xi attended the 26th Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) Economic Leaders’ Meeting, paid state visits to PNG, Brunei and the Philippines and met with leaders of the Pacific island countries that have diplomatic ties with China during the APEC event.

At the APEC meeting, Xi offered China’s wisdom and approaches to achieving economic development and cooperation in the region and the world at large, amid increasing economic instability and uncertainty and other global challenges, Wang said.

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