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Talks set with Philippines on South China Sea

By Mo Jingxi | China Daily | Updated: 2017-05-17 07:49

Chinese and Philippine officials will meet in the southwestern city of Guiyang on Friday to consult for the first time on South China Sea disputes.

Delegations led by Vice-Foreign Minister Liu Zhenmin and Philippine Ambassador Jose Santiago Santa Romana will engage in a "friendly dialogue and consultations" on topics related to the South China Sea in the city in Guizhou province, Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Hua Chunying said on Tuesday.

"The meeting aims to implement the consensus reached by leaders of the two countries in October and establish an institutional dialogue platform," she said at a daily news conference in Beijing.

Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte made his first state visit to China in October, a move that helped repair ties that had been damaged by the previous administration in Manila.

According to Hua, China expects and believes the meeting will help the two countries manage differences, promote maritime cooperation and lead to resolving related disputes and creating a good atmosphere to enhance ties and cooperation in various areas.

Hua said the two leaders again reached consensus on resolving the South China Sea issue through dialogue and negotiations on Monday when President Xi Jinping met with Duterte, who attended the Belt and Road Forum for International Cooperation in Beijing.

"China appreciates President Duterte for conducting active dialogue and cooperation with China on the issue and jointly safeguarding peace and stability in the South China Sea," she said.

Before Friday's bilateral meeting, the 14th meeting of senior officials from China and the Association of Southeast Asian Nations regarding the implementation of a code of conduct in the South China Sea will be held in Guiyang on Thursday.

mojingxi@chinadaily.com.cn

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