China's Xi Jinping to visit PH in Nov

BEIJING -- Chinese President Xi Jinping is set to visit the Philippines in November as a follow-up to the recently held high-level economic meetings between Philippine and Chinese economic and infrastructure managers in Beijing, the Department of Budget of Management (DBM) said in a statement on Friday. 

Chinese President Xi Jinping

Philippine government officials led by economic and infrastructure managers met Thursday with the Chinese Ministry of Commerce (MOFCOM), led by Minister Zhong Shan, to discuss economic and trade ties between the Philippines and China.

The bilateral meeting stressed the need to deepen cooperation in commercial and infrastructure development, specifically under the Philippine government's "Build, Build, Build" program.

The Philippine delegation gave updates on the progress of China-financed infrastructure projects and projects pitched for feasibility study assistance by the Chinese government.

Both sides affirmed their commitment to strengthen economic ties and work together for the timely completion of the infrastructure projects.

Some of the projects discussed in the meeting were the Chico River Pump Irrigation Project, the Kaliwa Dam Project, the North-South Railway Project-South Line (Long Haul), the Subic-Clark Railway Project, and the Safe Philippines Project Phase 1.

"We came to China to coordinate with our counterparts and ensure that our priority projects will be rolled out and completed as planned," said Budget Secretary Benjamin Diokno. "We appreciate all the help we can get with our ambitious Build Build Build program."

The MOFCOM meeting is part of the high-level meetings between the Philippines and China held in Beijing on August 22-24.

The Philippine delegation will also meet with the Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank, the China International Development Cooperation Agency, and the Export-Import Bank of China to explore additional avenues of cooperation, economic aid, and investments.

The Philippine delegation is headed by Finance Secretary Carlos Dominguez, Diokno and Socioeconomic Planning Secretary Ernesto Pernia. The infrastructure managers included Public Works Secretary Mark Villar, Transportation Secretary Arthur Tugade, and Bases Conversion Development Authority (BCDA) President and Chief Executive Officer Vince Dizon. Foreign Affairs Secretary Alan Cayetano also accompanied the group in the series of meetings with the Chinese government. (PR)