Chinese premier makes official visit to Philippines

Updated: 2007-01-15 20:13

MANILA, Philippines - Chinese Premier Wen Jiabao flew to the Philippine capital Manila on Monday for a state visit after attending a regional summit in central Cebu city.

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The Chinese leader will hold talks with President Gloria Macapagal Arroyo and other Philippine officials in Manila during his two-day stay.

The two leaders also were to witness the signing of about a dozen bilateral trade and economic agreements later Tuesday.

The accords include a US$500 million (euro388 million) loan for a Philippines rail project, a US$ US$1.9 million (euro1.5 million) technical cooperation agreement and a memorandum to deepen agricultural and fisheries cooperation.

The Chinese news agency Xinhua quoted Wen as saying that the two countries are "committed to establishing a strategic and cooperative relationship for peace and development."

Wen had been scheduled to make the trip in December, but it was moved to January after the Association of Southeast Asian Nations summit and the East Asian leaders meeting he was to attend was postponed by host Philippines due to a storm.

ASEAN groups Brunei, Cambodia, Indonesia, Laos, Malaysia, Myanmar, Philippines, Singapore, Thailand and Vietnam.

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