Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte visits Singapore

0 Comment(s)Print E-mail Xinhua, December 15, 2016
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Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte began his two-day state visit to Singapore on Thursday.

Duterte received a ceremonial welcome at Istana, met with Singapore President Tony Tan Keng Yam and Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong respectively.

During the call on President Tan, both leaders affirmed the excellent bilateral relations, which are underpinned by strong economic ties, warm people-to-people links and close partnership within ASEAN, according a statement by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs (MFA) on Thursday.

Tan highlighted that both countries should explore ways to enhance connectivity in order to boost business links and promote tourism growth.

They agreed that there was room to further broaden and deepen bilateral relations, including strengthening security cooperation.

Duterte and Lee agreed that ASEAN should work together to deal with transboundary challenges such as human and drug trafficking and terrorism, said MFA.

Tan also hosted a state banquet for Duterte. In his toast speech, Tan noted that International Enterprise Singapore is devoting more resources to step up its presence in the Philippines next year, to better serve the growing interest of Singapore companies in the Philippine market.

According to MFA, Lee will host Duterte for lunch on Friday. Duterte will meet Singapore business leaders, visit Singapore Botanic Gardens where an orchid will be named in his honor. In addition, Duterte will also meet the Filipino community.

Singapore is the Philippines' fourth largest trading partner and a top ASEAN investor. Each year, Singapore welcomes about 700,000 visitors from the Philippines.

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