ASEAN KEY DESTINATIONS
PHL, Russia ink deals on defense, nuclear energy
May 26, 2017
The agreements between the Philippines and Russia, that were supposed to be signed in the presence of Presidents Rodrigo Duterte and Vladimir Putin, were inked by key officials from both countries on Thursday.
Even though Duterte was unable to complete the supposed four-day official visit, Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov said the trip was still successful.
"So, we can surely say that the visit of President Duterte to the Russian Federation indeed provide an important impetus in development of stable relationships between our countries," he said.
Foreign Affairs Secretary Alan Cayetano and his Russian counterpart Lavrov led the signing of agreements on defense cooperation, nuclear energy, tourism, agriculture, trade and industry, foreign affairs, transportation, as well as culture and the arts in Moscow.
“In fact, I think we covered everything that should have been covered in their bilateral meeting plus other matters that came up because of the terror threats not only in the Philippines or the threat of terrorism but also because of the extensive experience, expertise and knowledge and best practices of the Russian Federation in dealing with ISIS and terrorism,” Cayetano said in a press conference following the signing ceremony.
Cayetano signed the defense cooperation to expand exchanges in terms of training, seminars, and best practices between the two countries to develop relations in the field of military education, including military medicine, military history, sports, and culture as well as experiences in consultation, observer participation in military training exercises, and military port calls.
Secretary Fortunato Dela Peña of the Department of Science and Technology, meanwhile, signed a Memorandum of Agreement between the DOST and the State Atomic Energy Corporation also known as ROSATOM on Cooperation on the Use of Nuclear Energy for Peaceful Purposes.
“The general purpose of this agreement is to develop cooperation in the area of peaceful use of atomic energy in accordance with domestic laws, rules and regulations and, of course, international agreements that govern the peaceful use of atomic energy,” Philippine Ambassador to Russia Carlos Sorreta said.
Agriculture Secretary Manny Piñol also signed a Memorandum of Understanding with the Russian Federation’s Ministry of Agriculture to help the Philippines achieve food security through cooperation and through research in agriculture and fisheries, livestock breeding, processing, and transportation and storage of agriculture and fishery products.
Trade Secretary Ramon Lopez signed two agreements: the Memorandum of Intent between the Department of Trade and Industry and the Ministry of Economic Development to foster mutually beneficial trade and investment cooperation between the two countries and the Memorandum of Understanding on Cooperation in Industry Development related to the products and technology intended to strengthen the industries of both countries.
Cayetano also signed two other agreements.
The first is the agreement on cooperation on transportation between the Department of Transportation and Russia's Ministry of Transportation, meant to jumpstart the exchange of technology and best practices in transportation. The Russian Federation was expected to provide support and technical assistance through exchange of experience and knowledge as well as cooperation in the framework of research projects and educational visits.
The second agreement was on the Protocol on Cooperation between the National Commission for Culture and the Arts of the Philippines and Russia's Ministry of Culture. This agreement was aimed to promote participation in international film and art festivals, as well as exchange of music, circus, dance, and for theater groups or individual artists “to build closer ties in the area of culture and history.”
Tourism Secretary Wanda Teo signed the Joint Action Program from 2017 to 2019, to promote tourism and exhange of best practices.
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