Marcos seeks 'even stronger' ties with US as he leaves for official visit

enablePagination: false
maxItemsPerPage: 10
maxPaginationLinks: 10

President Ferdinand Marcos Jr., along with First Lady Liza Araneta-Marcos, boarded the presidential plane past 1:30 p.m. for his official visit to the United States. He will be conducting his second bilateral meeting with US President Joe Biden on May 1.

Metro Manila (CNN Philippines, April 30) — President Ferdinand Marcos Jr. said he aims to forge an "even stronger" relationship with the United States as he left the country on Sunday for his official visit to Washington.

Speaking at the Villamor Air Base past 1 p.m., Marcos said his visit to the US from April 30 to May 4 is an "important one," saying it is the "first in more than 10 years by a Philippine president."

"During this visit, we will reaffirm our commitment to fostering our long-standing alliance as an instrument of peace and as a catalyst of development in the Asia-Pacific region, and for that matter, the rest of the world," he said.

"I intend to convey to President (Joe) Biden and his senior Cabinet officials that the president is determined to forge an ever stronger relationship with the United States in a wide range of areas that not only address the concerns of our times, but also those that are critical to advancing our core interests," he added.

The chief executive's official visit to the US is amid regional tensions as China warned the Philippines over opening up additional sites under the Enhanced Defense Cooperation Agreement (EDCA) with the US. The locations of the four new sites were announced on April 3.

RELATED: PH urges US, China to 'manage rivalry' amid rising tensions in Taiwan

The Philippine Coast Guard has accused Beijing of "aggressive tactics" in disputed waters, with the latest resulting in a near-collision between Chinese and Philippine coast guard vessels in waters off Ayungin Shoal.

RELATED: ‘Respect our rights’: PH studying possible action after near-collision with China ship

Marcos is expected to promote the country's economic agenda, boost cooperation in various sectors, and raise security issues during his trip, Foreign Affairs Secretary Ma. Teresita Daza earlier said.

READ: Marcos to highlight PH economic agenda, security issues in US trip

The president also said one of his priorities is to push for greater economic investment through trade and investment, science and technology, and innovation cooperation.

"I intend to speak and find opportunities in the semiconductor industry, critical minerals, renewable and clean energy, including nuclear, and infrastructure projects that will improve our digital telecommunication systems and facilitate sustainability efforts to address climate change," he added.

This will be Marcos' second bilateral meeting with Biden, building upon previous exchanges with US Vice President Kamala Harris and numerous visits and meetings of government officials on both sides.

The country's delegation will consist of Marcos' economic team and key Filipino private sector leaders.