Philip­pines to get in­vest­ments, Abe says

Northwest Arkansas Democrat-Gazette - - INTERNATIONAL -

MANILA, Philip­pines — Ja­panese Prime Min­is­ter Shinzo Abe on Thurs­day pledged $8.7 bil­lion worth of busi­ness op­por­tu­ni­ties and pri­vate in­vest­ments to the Philip­pines, whose pres­i­dent has boosted ties with China.

Af­ter talks with Pres­i­dent Ro­drigo Duterte in Manila, Abe wel­comed the Philip­pine leader’s ef­forts to im­prove Manila’s ties with Bei­jing “in light of the ar­bi­tral award,” re­fer­ring to the Philip­pines’ vic­tory in an ar­bi­tra­tion rul­ing declar­ing China’s claims to the South China Sea in­valid.

China has re­fused to rec­og­nize the July 12 ar­bi­tra­tion de­ci­sion and has warned the United States and other coun­tries not in­volved in the ter­ri­to­rial row not to med­dle in the dis­putes.

Abe, how­ever, said “the is­sue of the South China Sea is linked di­rectly to re­gional peace and sta­bil­ity and is a con­cern to the en­tire in­ter­na­tional com­mu­nity.”

AP/FRAN­CIS MALASIG

Ja­panese Prime Min­is­ter Shinzo Abe (left) and Philip­pine Pres­i­dent Ro­drigo Duterte toast dur­ing a state ban­quet Thurs­day af­ter Abe ar­rived in Manila for a two-day visit.

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