Improved ties between China-Philippines not a threat

"You can not shut down the United States because we still need them", Davide said.

Philippines President Rodrigo Duterte's announcement of a "separation" from his country's traditional ally the United States has been hailed as a diplomatic victory by state media in China, but many Chinese internet users have greeted his words with scepticism.

"America has lost", he said. The Philippine president also said he's willing to talk to Putin, and that it's Russia, China and the Philippines against the world.

China has pulled out all the stops to welcome Mr Duterte, including a marching band complete with baton-twirling band master at his official welcoming ceremony outside the Great Hall of the People, which most leaders do not get.

After speaking diparagingly of Obama, Duterte now says he is ordering an end to joint maneuvers between the USA and Philippine militaries.

Duterte cited the alleged asymmetrical alliance of the country with the U.S., saying the relationship is only beneficial for the latter.

Russel will fly in over the weekend for his meetings next week.

The three officials, Kirby, Goldberg and Koscina said that the United States will remain committed to the 70-year-old relationship with the Philippines.

The President has said that the Philippines has an enormous drug problem with an estimated 3 million Filipinos hooked on illicit drugs, mainly crystal meth, locally known as shabu, smuggled into the country from China or manufactured locally in makeshift laboratories.

"Remittances from the US are large, and a lot of business process outsourcing (BPO) is also by American firms into the Philippines". It's for the best interests of my country that we maintain that relationship. Why?

Duterte said a defence pact signed in 2014, known by the acronym of EDCA and which allows for a much greater USA military presence in the Philippines, remained in jeopardy.

A "Memorandum of Understanding between the Department of Trade and Industry of the Republic of the Philippines and the Ministry of Commerce of the Government of the People's Republic of China on Strengthening Bilateral Trade, Investment and Economic Cooperation". "The president specifically mentioned his desire to strengthen further ties with China and Asean region, which we have been trading with for centuries". "We have heard from many of our friends and partners in the region who are likewise confused about where this is going", he said.

Lopez assured United States investments in the Philippines are safe.

In a statement issued after Duterte's speech, Finance Secretary Carlos Dominguez and Socioeconomic Planning Secretary Ernesto Pernia said the cabinet would move strongly and swiftly towards regional economic integration.

And despite declaring in the election campaign he would ride a jet ski to the disputed Spratly Islands to plant a flag and stake the country's claim, Mr Duterte has taken a different tack in office.

"But we definitely won't stop the trade and investment activities with the West, specifically the USA", he added.

During Duterte's state visit to China, 13 bilateral deals covering trade, investment, tourism, crime, and drug prohibition were signed.

At the end of Duterte's trip to China, both countries announced in a joint statement several trade and business deals and closer cooperation on a range of concerns.

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