SPEAKER Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo welcomed and expressed full support for the relationship between China and the Philippines.
Arroyo, Senate President Vicente “Tito” Sotto III and other Congress leaders yesterday had bilateral talks with Chinese President Xi Jingping as part of his two-day state visit in the country.
According to Arroyo, the relationship of the two nations is very important for the country because of several reasons that include the good economic standing of China.
“One reason is geography. Good relations between neighbors are always priority. A second reason is that, China is increasingly involved not only in bilateral dealings but collectively, such as through ASEAN. Third reason is that China’s economy is the most dynamic among the neighboring nations,” Arroyo said.
“A fourth factor is that domestically, the Philippines has a vibrant Filipino-Chinese community for whom increased business dealings with China is very natural. And fifth, infrastructure will be very important for the Philippines in the coming years,” she added.
The former President believes that there is no country in the world that matches China’s recent track record and capabilities.
Likewise, Arroyo said the House of Representatives under her leadership is fully supporting the approach that President Xi and President Duterte are taking, especially for a strategic and comprehensive relationship.
On the part of the House of Representatives, Arroyo vowed the passage of a legislative agenda focused on areas that are essential to economic activities, such as generating fiscal resources to improve the country’s infrastructures.
Besides legislation, Arroyo also promised to activate the traditional oversight function of the lawmakers in order to determine if the Executive Branch is properly implementing the programs.
Meanwhile, Arroyo said she is confident that Filipinos can learn much from China’s impressive growth, particularly during the last 40 years.
“In the last 40 years, China has shown the world that rapid economic growth and modernization is possible with a combination of vision, political will, and open and responsible relations with other nations. China has done in 40 years what other countries might take 200 years to do. So we congratulate you for that. It is good for China, it is good for the Philippines, it is good for the world,” she said.
The meeting was held in Shangri-La at the Fort in Taguig City. Present during the meeting were Quezon City Rep. Feliciano Belmonte Jr., Deputy Speaker Art Yap, Malabon City Rep. Ricky Sandoval and others.