Upon the invitation of His Excellency Hu Jintao, President of the People's Republic of China, Her Excellency Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo, President of the Republic of the Philippines paid a state visit to China from 1 to 3 September 2004.
The visit was aimed at promoting the existing close traditional friendship and good neighborly relationship between the two countries, enhancing mutual understanding and trust and facilitating economic cooperation and development.
During the visit, President Hu Jintao held talks with President Arroyo. His Excellency Jiang Zemin, Chairman of the Central Military Commission, and His Excellency Wen Jiabao, Premier of the State Council,also met President Arroyo.
Leaders of the two countries exchanged views on bilateral ties as well as international and regional issues of common interest in a sincere and friendly atmosphere. They noted with satisfaction the significant progress in the bilateral relationship and the steady expansion and deepening of cooperation in all fields. They reaffirmed their commitment to work on the comprehensive development of their ties. They agreed to further promote the healthy and steady development of the relationship, guided by the principles enshrined in the Joint Statement on the Framework of Bilateral Cooperation in the 21st Century signed by the two Governments in 2000.
The two sides agreed to prepare for the celebrations of the 30th anniversary of the establishment of China-Philippines diplomatic relations in 2005.
The two sides agreed to strengthen ties and to sustain high-level contacts exchanges at all levels in all fields of government, business,academic communities, media and non-government organizations of the two countries.
They also agreed to further strengthen various consultation and cooperation mechanisms, including the foreign ministry consultations, consular consultations, the Joint Trade Committee, the Joint Committee on Agriculture and the Joint Committee on Science and Technology.
Both sides acknowledged the strong complementarity between the two economies. Noting the remarkable progress achieved in bilateral trade in the recent years, they agreed to promote the further expansion of bilateral trade, the improvement of the trade structure and the development of potentials in trade and services.
Both sides expect the Philippines' participation in the Early Harvest Program of the ASEAN-China Free Trade Area on 1 January 2005. The Philippines expressed appreciation for China's flexibility.
The Philippines recognized China's market economy status.
In the interest of expanding mutual investment, they agreed to encourage entrepreneurs to invest in each other's countries, particularly in the fields of infrastructure, agriculture, resources, information and communications technology among others. The Philippine side expressed appreciation for China's support for the agricultural development program and the Northrail project of the Philippine government.
The two sides agreed to promote cooperation in tourism and encourage their nationals to visit each other's countries.
The two sides indicated their readiness to enhance people-to-people exchanges with further cooperation in educational, cultural and other fields.
Both sides believed that expanded exchanges and dialogue in the military and security fields will strengthen the level of mutual political trust between the two countries. They agreed to study the possible establishment of the annual defense security consultation mechanism between their defense departments. They also agreed to strengthen ways and means to implement cooperation agreements concerning judicial assistance, drug control and transnational crimes.
The Philippines side reaffirmed its adherence to the one-China policy and understands efforts by the Chinese government to maintain national unity.
The two sides reaffirmed their commitment to the peace and stability in the South China Sea and their readiness to continue discussions to study cooperative activities like joint development pending the comprehensive and final settlement of territorial disputes and overlapping maritime claims in the area. They agreed to promote the peaceful settlement of disputes in accordance with universally-recognized principles of international law, including the 1982 United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea. They agreed that the early and vigorous implementation of the 2002 ASEAN-China Declaration on the Conduct of Parties in the South China Sea will pave the way for the transformation of the South China Sea into an area of cooperation.
The two sides agreed to continue to promote cooperation between China and ASEAN, pursue the realization of the China-ASEAN free trade area and strengthen the ASEAN plus 3 process.
They recognized that the China and Philippines should continue to work with other developing countries for fairness and balance in the global free trade regime.
They shared the view that maintaining peace and stability in the region was of critical importance. The Philippines acknowledged China's efforts to bring about denuclearization and development in the Korean Peninsula.
President Arroyo expressed appreciation for the warm hospitality and friendship extended to her delegation during her visit to China.
President Arroyo invited President Hu Jintao to visit the Philippines at a mutually convenient date. President Hu expressed appreciation for the invitation. Both sides will prepare for the State Visit of President Hu to the Philippines.