Amid unfunded projects, China to still negotiate with PH over infra deals — embassy

By Jimwell Aquino

PHOTO: Michael Varcas / Philippine Star

Amid its unfunded big-ticket projects in the Philippines, China appears to be keeping its connection with the Philippines as it continues to look for ways to help improve its infrastructure projects, its embassy said.

In a statement issued on Sunday, the Chinese embassy noted that "it will tap its own advantage and support the Philippines to improve its infrastructure," highlighting China's strength in planning quality initiatives.

The two countries are focusing on agricultural modernization, strengthening high-tech infrastructure, developing energy conservation, and improving people-to-people relations.

This comes after doubts from the country's transport officials over various China-backed railway projects that have gone unfunded, including the Laguna-Bicol, Subic-Clark, and Mindanao Railway projects.

To recall, Transportation Undersecretary for Railways Cesar Chavez stated that China had yet to respond to the country's funding request for those initiatives, and that President Marcos Jr. had already directed them to renegotiate the contracts.

Regardless, the Chinese diplomat asserted that they should "view things from a strategic and overall perspective, set aside disputes, and use political wisdom to advance joint development and make the pie of cooperation bigger.”

They also said that, despite differing positions in maritime disputes, China is open to technical cooperations, believing that these issues should not affect bilateral relations and should be discussed in a diplomatic dialogue.


Edited by Audrei Jeremy A. Mendador
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