RP - China Relations Now 30 Years; Big Friendship Celebration at Manila Hotel Tonight

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Byline: DAVID CAGAHASTIAN

Arroyo, Wu vow even stronger ties

The Philippines and China will commemorate today the 30th anniversary of their diplomatic relations, vowing to further strengthen their ties for the next 20 years towards a "golden age of partnership."

Celebrations for the 30th Philippines-China Friendship Day will be held simultaneously in the two countries, with celebrations in the Philippines to be held at the Manila Hotel tonight and attended by President Gloria Macapagal Arroyo and Chinese Ambassador Wu Hongbo.

The Chinese embassy in Manila said that the "strengthened relationship between China and the Philippines is expected to greatly help in the achievement of peace and development in the Asian region."

The Chinese embassy said the Philippines is fast becoming an important security and trade ally of China.

The Philippines also considers China as one of its three most important allies along with the United States and Japan.

In April this year, Chinese President Hu Jintao went on a state visit to the Philippines to reaffirm the close relations between the two countries.

During President Hus visit, the Philippines and China signed some $1.5 billion worth of trade agreements. China also extended official development assistance to the Philippines.

President Hu announced that the common goals of the Philippines and China will be the realization of a $20-billion trade volume between the two countries in favor of the Philippines, and the creation of a more peaceful and secure Asian region. …