November 25, 2017 | MANILA, PHILIPPINES

Philippines, Mongolia agree to improve agricultural, tourism, trade ties

THE PHILIPPINES and Mongolia have agreed to improve their ties in the areas of agriculture, tourism, trade and finance.

President Rodrigo R. Duterte and Mongolian Prime Minister Jargaltulga Erdenebat held their first bilateral meeting on Sunday afternoon on the sidelines of China’s “One Belt, One Road” forum at the country’s capital.

In a briefing on Sunday night, Foreign Affairs Executive Director Evangeline Ong Jimenez-Ducrocq said the two leaders “generally talked about the bilateral cooperation,” noting that ties between the two nations are “not very well-developed”

“This also means that there’s a lot of potential,” she said. “They also talked about some political and institutional relationships... So I think both sides are very interested to institutionalize this relationship among, between foreign ministries.”

“The President expressed his view that peace is better served when there is more participation by stakeholders in the region. And of course Mongolia is an important stakeholder,” she added.

Both leaders also agreed to visit each other’s countries at mutually convenient dates.

Mongolia is host to more than 200 Filipinos, a number of whom work in professional services, according to data provided by Malacañang. The Philippines and Mongolia established diplomatic relations in October 1973. -- Ian Nicolas P. Cigaral