Friendship Year highlights Sino-Philippine cooperation

March 26, 2012 Edited by He Shan

The opening ceremony of Sino-Philippine Friendship and Exchange Year was launched in Manila on March 20, 2012. In August of last year, Philippines President Benigno Aquino III paid a state visit to China, after which the two countries' leaders named the year 2012-2013 the "Sino-Philippine Friendship and Exchange Year."

The long-standing friendship of China and the Philippines can be traced back over a thousand years. Since the establishment of diplomatic ties 37 years ago, the two countries have realized exchanges and cooperation in various fields, bringing mutual benefits to both peoples. It's noteworthy that both the governmental and non-governmental cooperation thrives. The launching of the Friendship and Exchange Year is symbolic of the friendly relations between the two nations.

The Sino-Philippine friendship has blossomed with the development of bilateral economic and trade cooperation. Bilateral trade volume reached a new high in 2011 at more than US$32.2 billion. The two countries hope that more cooperation can be reached and more exchanges can be realized in the years ahead. This calls for the continued joint efforts of the two governments and the general public.

The launching ceremony of the Sino-Philippine Friendship and Exchange Year is just a beginning," Chinese ambassador to the Philippines Ma Keqing said. "The two countries, boasting a 37-year-long cooperation, will embrace a promising future".