China and Philippines agree to cooperate on $3.7 billion-worth of projects

By Jing Shuiyu | | Updated: 2017-01-23 21:00

China has agreed to cooperate on $3.7 billion-worth of projects in the Philippines, the bulk of which involve building new infrastructure.

The deal was confirmed after a high-level meeting between ministers from China and the Philippines in Beijing on Monday, with the first batch of projects aiming to reduce poverty.

China's minister of commerce Gao Hucheng said they were waiting for the banks to process the paperwork with more details about the projects to be revealed later.

Philippines finance secretary Carlos Dominguez said 38 large and small projects had been planned.

In addition to the small-scale projects, Dominguez said the Philippines were also looking at “implementing large infrastructure projects in the rural areas particularly in irrigation, logistics, bridges and roads to connect our different communities with the major markets".

Dominguez said the meeting was “a very productive, first step” towards achieving the desires of both sides.

Bilateral trade volume between China and the Philippines reached $47.2 billion in 2016, up 3.3 percent from the previous year.

Chinese direct non-financial investment in the Philippines increased by 63 percent compared to last year to $29.98 million in the first 11 months of 2016.

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