China, USA compete to greet Marcos
China, USA compete to greet Marcos

China, USA compete to greet Marcos

The great power rivalry between the United States and China seems to have accelerated the recognition abroad of former Senator Ferdinand Marcos Jr. as the majority winner in the May 9 presidential election.

Three days after the polls, when returns showed he had gained a clear majority, China and the United States hurried congratulations to Marcos, who returns to claim the seat in Malacañang that his late father left at the height of the People Power Revolt in 1986.

U.S. President Joe Biden called Marcos on Thursday after early figures showed he had obtained about 58 percent of the estimated 65.7 million votes cast nationwide.

The White House said: “President Biden stressed that he looks forward to working with the President-elect to continue to strengthen the US-Philippine alliance, while expanding bilateral cooperation on a wide range of issues, including the fight against COVID-19, and addresses the climate crisis, promoting broad-based economic growth and respect for human rights. “

Philippine Ambassador to the United States Jose Manuel Romualdez said Marcos told Biden: “We are ready to work with you, Mr. President, and continue to strengthen our relationship.”

By chance, Biden then hosted a two-day summit with the leaders of the 10-member Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN). When President Duterte was unable to attend, Secretary of State Teddy Locsin Jr. for him.

The day before, the US Embassy in Manila said: “Our special partnership is rooted in a long and deeply intertwined history, common values ​​and interests and strong people-to-people ties. As friends, partners and allies, we will continue to work closely with The Philippines to promote respect for human rights and to promote a free and open, connected, prosperous, secure and resilient Indo-Pacific region. “

Before Biden’s call, Chinese President Xi Jinping also called Marcos to congratulate him, assuring him that their countries are “partners through thick and thin.”

Chinese Ambassador Huang Xilian forwarded Xi’s full message to Marcos in a letter calling him “the 17th President of the Philippines.”

Xi’s letter said: “I attach great importance to the development of relations between China and the Philippines and am willing to establish good cooperation with President-elect Marcos, adhere to good neighborliness and friendship.”

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Marcos’ late father visited Beijing in June 1975 to open diplomatic relations with China. Communist Party President Mao Zedong himself received Marcos Sr. and then First Lady Imelda Marcos and pampered them and their large entourage with a state banquet.

In the world community, especially in this corner of Asia, the leadership of the great powers means. Calls from Xi and Biden were followed by congratulations from other foreign leaders. Their messages helped cement Marcos’ early psychological grip on the presidency.

As of Thursday, with 98.35 percent of returns returned, Marcos had over 31 million votes. That’s twice as many votes as President Duterte won in 2016 and more than twice as many votes as Marcos’ closest rival, Vice President Leni Robredo.

With Marcos’ leading leadership, his camp extended a hand of reconciliation to its opponents and critics and called for cooperation to succeed with his forthcoming administration.

“For those who are protesting, please do not push for your agenda of hostility among Filipinos. We are not enemies,” Marcos’ spokesman said on television.

Robredo had said they would ask independent experts to validate the results of the election in light of reported cheating and irregularities, including the malfunction of about 1,800 pollsters that had disrupted the vote in some areas.

However, the Parish Pastoral Council for Responsible Voting (PPCRV) assured that the physical returns from the areas they had dealt with matched those received electronically.

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Comparative data: Last year, the Philippines and the United States marked the 75th anniversary of the establishment of their diplomatic relations. Opened later, ties to China have blossomed over the 47 years from Elder Marcos’ reign of war to the present day.

Despite Manila’s focus on Beijing announced by President Duterte during his first visit to China in October 2016, the United States remains an important trading partner and source of investment for the Philippines.

Last year, the United States was the country’s third largest trading partner with a total of $ 19.6 billion, the second best export market with $ 11.85 billion in export sales and the fifth largest import source with imports worth $ 7.75 billion.

China is the Philippines’ best trading partner with $ 38.4 billion (19.9 percent of the country’s total trade) and ranked first for both exports to $ 21.48 billion and imports to $ 26.8 billion.

The United States ranked second in terms of foreign direct investment in 2021 with $ 150.1 million and remains a major source of investment for the Philippines in areas such as electronics, transportation and storage, administrative and support services, manufacturing, real estate and IT-Business Process Management. .

In terms of total investment promotion agencies-approved foreign investment for 2021, the US ranked in 5th place to P3,823.9 million. China ranked 7th with P2,144 million.

The United States also remained the largest source of money and remittances from overseas Filipino workers in 2021 totaling $ 12.736 million.

More money transfers in 2021 came from China (mainland), $ 24 million (rank 43); Taiwan $ 841.9 million (rank 8); Hong Kong, $ 722 million (rank 11) and Macau, $ 93 million (rank 29).

With the reopening of the country to foreign visitors in 2021, the largest number of tourist arrivals, of more than 39,000, came from the United States. China came in third with 15,000 arrivals.

More than four million Filipino Americans live in the United States, and nearly 300,000 U.S. citizens live in the Philippines, including a large number of U.S. military veterans.

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NB: All Posts are also archived on ManilaMail.com. The author is on Twitter as @FDPascual. Email: [email protected]


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