Next PH-China bilateral talks on WPS expected in Q3

By Joyce Ann L. Rocamora

May 30, 2018, 10:03 pm

MANILA-- Philippine Ambassador to China Jose Santiago Sta. Romana said the next meeting for the bilateral consultative mechanism (BCM) between China and the Philippines is expected on the 2nd half of the year.

"(There's) no date yet for the next BCM, but it will be sometime in the second half of the year. Likely August or September, but not yet set," he told the Philippine News Agency (PNA) on Wednesday.

Sta. Romana did not elaborate specific subjects to be tackled, but assured there will be "more discussion of issues of concern to each side."

He added the two countries are expected to talk about possible progress report on results of panel study on oil the gas cooperation in the West Philppine Sea, as well as other areas of maritime cooperation such as in environment and fisheries.

In a meeting on Monday, the envoy discussed issues related to China and the West Philippine Sea with President Rodrigo R. Duterte, together with Foreign Affairs Secretary Alan Peter Cayetano, Defense Secretary Delfin Lorenzana and National Security Adviser Hermogenes Esperon.

Manila and Beijing held its second meeting for the BCM in February.

The mechanism, established in May 2017 is a venue for the two states to tackle all issues on the West Philippine Sea dispute. (PNA)