Duterte hopes for more aid with second China trip: analyst


Posted at May 04 2017 10:51 AM

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President Rodrigo Duterte is hoping to secure more aid from China when he heads to Beijing for the Silk Road Summit this month, an analyst said Thursday.

It is clear that like former President Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo, Duterte has put better economic relations with China "above" the disputes in the South China Sea, said Malcolm Cook, a senior fellow at the ISEAS-Yusof Ishak Institute in Singapore.

"President Duterte himself said he hopes to be able to come back from the Belt and Road Summit with more economic help from China for the Philippines. He's clearly hoping the bill will be paid," he said in an interview with ANC's Market Edge.

Duterte is one of the state and government leaders Chinese President Xi Jinping invited to attend the 2017 Belt and Road Forum on May 14 and 15.

It will be Duterte's second trip to China in eight months. He secured $24 billion in trade and investment pledges during a state visit in October.

This summit will come weeks after Southeast Asian leaders met in Manila, and came out with a soft stance against China in relation to its alleged aggression in the disputed waters.