Ferdinand Marcos Jr.

PRIMER: Marcos’ state visit to Brunei, defense summit speech in Singapore in May 2024

Dwight de Leon

This is AI generated summarization, which may have errors. For context, always refer to the full article.

PRIMER: Marcos’ state visit to Brunei, defense summit speech in Singapore in May 2024

CHIEF EXECUTIVE. File photo shows President Marcos delivering a speech before he flies to Saudi Arabia on October 19, 2023.

Presidential Communications Office

President Marcos caps the month of May with a high-profile address at Asia's premier defense summit in Singapore, preceded by a state visit to Brunei

MANILA, Philippines – President Ferdinand Marcos Jr. is making back-to-back visits to the Philippines’ neighbors in Southeast Asia next week, in response to invitations sent by leaders of these countries.

The first stop will be Brunei on May 28 to 29, followed by a trip to Singapore until the 31st.

Here are the things you need to know about the upcoming visits.


Marcos already flew to Brunei in January, not for work purposes, but to attend the royal wedding of Prince Abdul Mateen and businesswoman Yang Mulia Dayang Anisha Rosnah Binti Adam.

This upcoming trip, meanwhile, is a state visit. He will have a bilateral meeting with Brunei Sultan Hassanal Bolkiah. The two leaders’ first bilateral meeting was on November 12, 2022, on the sidelines of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) Summit in Phnom Penh.

Department of Foreign Affairs (DFA) Assistant Secretary Aileen Mendiola-Rau said in a Palace briefing on Friday, May 25, that the Philippines and Brunei are finalizing the memoranda of understanding on priority areas “ranging from agriculture to food security, maritime cooperation, tourism.”

Similar to past foreign trips, Marcos will attend a meet-and-greet event with the Filipino community, and take part in a business forum, an opportunity to secure investment commitments and investment pledges.


The highlight of the President’s overseas trip next week is his visit to Singapore, where he will deliver the keynote address at the 21st Shangri-La Dialogue.

The forum, which was first held in 2022, is organized annually by think tank International Institute of Strategic Studies, and is dubbed as Asia’s premier defense summit.

Only one leaders gets to deliver the keynote address every year, highlighting the significance of the invitation extended to President Marcos, who will be the first Philippine chief executive to address summit participants. He joins an exclusive list of speakers that includes Australian Prime Minister Anthony Albanese, Japanese Prime Minister Fumio Kishida, former Singaporean prime minister Lee Hsien Loong, and Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi.

His participation in the forum comes as tensions between Manila and Beijing in the West Philippine Sea take a turn for the worse, marked by China’s repeated use of water cannon to intimidate Philippine vessels, confusion over a supposed secret deal, and Beijing’s alleged wiretapping of a Philippine military official.

Must Read

Agreements and disagreements on the West Philippine Sea, explained 

Agreements and disagreements on the West Philippine Sea, explained 

The DFA said the President is expected to touch on the subject of the West Philippine Sea in his speech.

“When you have a forum such as this, it gives a good platform for a country to actually expound and articulate its position on key issues. So, it will be an important platform for us to actually also convey our positions relative to what is happening within the region and what we are advocating for,” DFA spokesperson Maria Teresita Daza said on Friday.

Marcos is also scheduled to meet with new Singaporean Prime Minister Lawrence Wong and President Tharman Shanmugaratnam, Daza added.

This will be his fourth visit to Singapore since Marcos became president, and his seventh foreign trip for 2024. – Rappler.com

Add a comment

Sort by

There are no comments yet. Add your comment to start the conversation.

Summarize this article with AI

How does this make you feel?

Download the Rappler App!
Avatar photo


Dwight de Leon

Dwight de Leon is a multimedia reporter who covers President Ferdinand Marcos Jr., the Malacañang, and the Commission on Elections for Rappler.