China Daily (USA) - - TOP NEWS -

Today, more than 700 delegates are at­tend­ing the fo­rum, from sec­tors in­clud­ing man­u­fac­tur­ing, agri­cul­ture, elec­tric­ity, finance, elec­tron­ics, telecom­mu­ni­ca­tions and tourism. Their proac­tive par­tic­i­pa­tion in the fo­rum show­cases the earnest wish for in-depth ex­changes of view and re­in­forced co­op­er­a­tion.

The Philip­pines shares a long history of a friendly and mu­tu­ally ben­e­fi­cial re­la­tion­ship with China, not only in terms of trade and in­vest­ment, but also in cul­tural and so­cial ex­changes. We also rec­og­nize how the Philip­pine-China eco­nomic re­la­tions have ma­tured through gen­er­a­tions. The trade and in­vest­ment re­la­tion­ship has had its highs and lows, but China re­mains a ma­jor com­mer­cial part­ner.

The mar­ket in the Philip­pines sig­nals huge po­ten­tial, as it en­joys a pop­u­la­tion of around 100 mil­lion, as well as a mid­dle class of more than 20 mil­lion peo­ple. This al­ready show­cases enor­mous de­mand. The num­ber of busi­ness­peo­ple join­ing Duterte’s visit has surged from around 100 (reg­is­tered trade delegates) to more than 400, and the ac­tual num­ber of them com­ing to Bei­jing may be 900. ... The Philip­pine tourism au­thor­i­ties have the hope that the num­ber of Chi­nese tourists visit­ing the coun­try— cur­rently 400,000 an­nu­ally— could rise to 2 mil­lion in the next year.

I think the most pos­i­tive thing is that there will be greater co­op­er­a­tion in busi­ness. I’ve al­ready said that we will host three or four meet­ings (of busi­ness rep­re­sen­ta­tives from both coun­tries) and more con­fer­ences. This is peo­ple-to-peo­ple orientation.

Jiang Zeng­wei, chair­man of the China Coun­cil for the Pro­mo­tion of In­ter­na­tional Trade

Car­men N. Pe­drosa, jour­nal­ist and colum­nist at The Philip­pine Star news­pa­per

Ra­mon M.

Lopez, Philip­pine sec­re­tary of Trade and In­dus­try


Cheng, pres­i­dent of Philip­pine Straits Travel Agency

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