President Ferdinand R. Marcos, Jr, on Wednesday welcomed the increased presence of Canada in the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) through its Indo-Pacific Strategy, which led to better regional maritime security and safety.
He noted the strategy, which was launched last November, provided ASEAN members access to training on smart border patrols, initiatives to address crime and terrorism, as well as military-to-military capacity building.
“We welcome Canada’s continued engagement through capacity-building programs, specialized and skill-based training to counter traditional and emerging threats,” Marcos said during his intervention in the ASEAN-Canada Summit in Indonesia.
He said the strategy will complement the adoption of the Joint Leaders’ Statement on ASEAN-Canada Strategic Partnership.
Under the partnership, ASEAN and Canada will engage in measures which will not only promote peace, resilience, and security, but expand trade, investment, and supply chain resilience in the Indo-Pacific region.
The President said the partnership is expected to expand mutual trade between the two parties.
Prior to the summit, Marcos held a bilateral meeting with Canadian Prime Minister Trudeau, where both leaders were able to discuss trade and investments in renewable energy, critical minerals exploration and processing, cooperation on agri-science and urban agriculture.
They also talked about cooperation in education and credentials recognition of Filipinos to practice their professions in Canada.
During their discussions, Trudeau invited the President to visit Canada next year in time for the 75th year of Philippines-Canada diplomatic relations.
As of press time, Malacañang has yet to confirm if the chief executive accepted the invitation or not.
Image credits: Sean Kilpatrick/The Canadian Press via AP