BEIJING- A Chinese official has described President Rodrigo Duterte's visit as an event that has helped to restore China-Philippine relations amid a tense territorial dispute.
China declared on Thursday the full restoration of relations with the Philippines, intensified by a fresh agreement to address maritime disputes through bilateral discussions.
"A new stage is now open between the two countries to address the South China Sea issue through bilateral discussions, and it means full recovery of the traditional friendship between China and the Philippines," China's Vice Foreign Minister Liu Zhenmin stated at a briefing after the bilateral talks between President Rodrigo Duterte and Chinese President Xi Jinping on Thursday morning.
He said that the two leaders met under a "friendly atmosphere" and covered wide range of issues.
The Chinese official said President Duterte's visit was "highly successful" and "signifies full return of China and Philippine friendship back to normal level."
He added that this marked a "new stage of practical co-operation, bilateral commerce, trade and technology."
China welcomed the Philippines' participation in its 'Maritime Silk Road Policy' while committing to taking active part in developing the country's infrastructure, agriculture and finance sectors.