(Bloomberg) -- The Philippines isn’t shifting away from China and will foster ties with the country, President Ferdinand Marcos Jr. said, underscoring efforts to balance relations as tensions increase between China and the US.
“Some people have said that the Philippines has shifted its policy away from the People’s Republic of China and to other powers,” Marcos said Thursday on the sidelines of an awards ceremony co-led by the Chinese embassy in Manila. “That is certainly not true.”
The Philippine leader also said that he sees China as a partner in promoting peace and trade in the South China Sea, where the two nations have competing claims. “This relationship will not be defined by differences,” he said.
Marcos is seeking to maintain warm ties with China, while also bolstering its defense alliance with the US in recent months. His government has been stepping up protests against Beijing’s actions in the disputed sea, as it also seeks joint energy cooperation in the area.
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