The Philippine Star : Japanese Prime Minister Fumio congratulates Marcos

By The Philippine Star

MANILA, Philippines — Japanese Prime Minister Kishida Fumio has congratulated Ferdinand “Bongbong” Marcos Jr., presumptive president-elect, as he affirmed the continued cooperation between the two countries.

The Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Japan on Friday said Fumio and Marcos talked over the phone for 15 minutes from 10:30 a.m.

It said that the Japanese prime minister has congratulated Marcos and “expressed his wish to take the bilateral Strategic Partnership to yet another height with [Marcos],” it said.

Marcos also confirmed the call on an Instagram post.

He said: “The partnership of Japan and the Philippines has been one of mutual benefit to our two countries and I hope not only to continue but to increase all of our engagements in every aspect of our relations.”

The prime minister also reaffirmed Japan’s resolve for the continued cooperation between their countries “on the economic front such as infrastructure development including railways and Subic Bay development, as well as in the security and coast guard law enforcement fields, through the High Level Joint Committee on Infrastructure Development and Economic Cooperation and the Foreign and Defense Ministerial Meeting (“2+2”), among others.”

Marcos earlier said his transition team has already been working, and part of it is creating their Cabinet members. So far, only two have been confirmed, including the education chief post for Sara Duterte, presumptive vice president-elect.

But Marcos has already stressed that their choice of economic managers is critical. Their team has yet to bare their economic agenda or the members of the economic Cabinet cluster.

“The two leaders also exchanged views on regional affairs. Prime Minister Kishida expressed his wish for future close coordination with President-elect Marcos for the realization of a ‘Free and Open Indo-Pacific,’ and the two leaders concurred on future coordination to realize regional peace and prosperity,” it added.

The ministry said Prime Minister Fumio and Marcos agreed to meet in person as early as possible. Marcos also received an invitation from Singaporean President Halimah Yacob for a State visit. — Kristine Joy Patag