BUSAN, South Korea—The Philippines and South Korea on Monday signed five agreements following the bilateral meeting between President Rodrigo Roa Duterte and South Korean President Moon Jae-in at The Westin Chosun Busan Hotel here.
The agreements are seen to boost cooperation on social security, tourism, culture and sports, as well as the much anticipated free trade agreement (FTA) between the two countries.
The two leaders witnessed the signing of the agreements. Among the agreements signed were:
· Agreement on social security between the Government of the Republic of the Philippines and the Government of the Republic of Korea. The signatories were Secretary of Foreign Affairs Teodoro Locsin Jr. of the Republic of the Philippines and Minister of Foreign Affairs Kang Kyung-wha of the Republic of Korea
· Implementation program of the MOU on tourism cooperation between the Department of Tourism of the Republic of the Philippines and the Ministry of Culture, Sports and Tourism of the Republic of Korea, signed by Secretary of Tourism Bernadette Romulo-Puyat of the Republic of the Philippines and Minister of Culture, Sports and Tourism Park Yang-woo of the Republic of Korea
· Joint statement by the Republic of the Philippines and the Republic of Korea on the early achievement package of the negotiations of the Philippines-Korea free trade agreement. It was signed by Secretary of Trade and Industry Ramon Lopez of the Republic of the Philippines and Minister for Trade Yoo Myung-hee of the Republic of Korea
· Memorandum of Understanding on cooperation in fisheries
· Memorandum of Understanding on cooperation in the field of education
Meanwhile, President Duterte expressed his gratitude to President Moon for South Korea’s $100,000 donation for the earthquake victims in Mindanao last month.
“Clearly, at no other time in our shared history have the bonds between our people this strong,” President Duterte said in thanking the South Korean leader during their bilateral meeting here.
Solidarity and mutual aid have been the hallmark of the two countries’ ties since 1950, he added.
This year, the Philippines and South Korea commemorate 70 years of bilateral relations.
President Duterte is in South Korea for the 2019 Association of Southeast Asian Nations-Republic of Korea (ASEAN-ROK) Commemorative Summit. The ASEAN and South Korea mark the 30th anniversary of their dialogue relations. PND