MANILA, Philippines (UPDATED) – In 2002, former President Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo signed Proclamation No. 148, which officially declared June 9 as Filipino-Chinese Friendship Day.
This serves as a commemoration of the strong alliance between the two nations and their diplomatic relations established on June 9, 1975, when Chinese Premier Chou En-lai and Philippine President Ferdinand Marcos signed the Joint Communique that forged “mutual recognition and the establishment of diplomatic relations at ambassadorial level” between the two countries.
Arroyo’s proclamation states: “It is thus fitting to designate one day in the year as Philippine-China Friendship Day to celebrate all that both countries enjoy and cherish together especially in the fields of socio-cultural, economic, and educational cooperation.”
Although the two countries have been locked in territorial tug-of-war issues, they have maintained relations in the areas of trade and tourism.
President Rodrigo Duterte, meanwhile, said that he is looking forward to strengthening ties between the Philippines and China as he is set to visit the Asian giant from October 18 to 21.
Here's a quick overview of the relationship of the Philippines and China – as told in latest available figures:
– Updated by Jodesz Gavilan and Michael Bueza/Rappler.com
Sources: Philippines-China Relations: Beyond the Territorial Disputes, Official Gazette, Philippine Statistics Authority, Embassy of the Republic of the Philippines in China, Embassy of the People's Republic of China in the Philippines
Elizabeth Ruth Deyro is a Rappler intern.