China and the Philippines inked 29 deals — including a joint oil and gas exploration pact — when Chinese President Xi Jinping was in Manila for a state visit which ended Wednesday.
While forging bilateral ties may have been one of the reasons for the two-day visit, another motivation could be an attempt to “woo” the Asian country away from Washington and to consolidate China’s influence in the region, Stephen Nagy, senior associate professor at the International Christian University in Tokyo told CNBC.
Xi is the first Chinese leader to visit Manila in 13 years. After meeting Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte for talks, Xi described the visit as a “milestone” in the countries’ relations.
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