Duterte: China willing to accept more Filipino workers

DAVAO CITY (MindaNews / 16 May) – President Rodrigo R. Duterte announced China is willing to accept more technical and highly-skilled workers from the Philippines.

In a press conference early Tuesday at the F. Bangoy International Airport, Duterte said China has expressed its intention to hire more English teachers, craftsmen, and engineers to address their need for more workers there.

“If you try your luck there, I am sure we will make it,” he said.

The President, however, did not mention how many workers can be accommodated in China.

Duterte held a separate meeting with Chinese President Xi Jinping and Premier Li Keqiang before he returned home Monday which marked the end of his three-day working visit in China where the leaders “renewed our resolve to strengthen our friendship and mutually beneficial partnerships on broad range of areas.”

“We reaffirmed commitment to build on our gains of my state visit last year and decided to accelerate the implementation of infrastructure projects previously agreed… We resolved to fully use the mechanisms we have established to dialogue openly, monitor progress, and ensure implementation of projects,” he said.

Duterte said China earlier lifted the restrictions on Philippine bananas.

“My country is back on exporting bananas, and anything we can sell to them. In the past, we are being supplicated. There was a question about ideology,” he said.

Duterte said they signed key agreement on “economic and technical cooperation, human resource development, energy,” and they continue to look for ways to deepen collaboration.

Last March 17, in Davao City, a six-year development program (SYDP) for trade and economic cooperation was signed between Philippines and China.

“The SYDP aims to steer and promote stable and orderly development of economic cooperation, enlarge the scope and enhance the level of cooperation, and drive sustainable and inclusive socio-economic development in both countries,” a press statement from Department of Finance (DOF) said.

The two countries also exchanged letters related to the first two feasibility studies of the nine projects getting support from the Chinese, covering projects such as Panay-Guimaras-Negros Bridges Project and Davao City Expressway Project.

Officials also discussed the economic developments in the country, the recently approved Philippine Development Plan (PDP) 2017 to 2022, and updates on bilateral cooperation in areas of infrastructure, trade, investments, agriculture, fishery, tourism, and financing cooperation between Philippines and China. (Antonio L. Colina IV / MindaNews)