Duterte to hold bilateral talks with Xi Jinping; plans to watch Gilas Pilipinas’ first game in FIBA tilt

By CNN Philippines Staff

President Rodrigo Duterte is set to hold a bilateral talk with Chinese President Xi Jinping this month, Presidential Spokesperson Salvador “Sal” Panelo said Sunday.

Panelo, however, said there is no exact date yet for the meeting.

“There will be talks about trade relations, problems that confronted the two countries respective to their territories, cultural exchanges and people-to-people, and many other things beneficial to both countries,” the spokesperson told CNN Philippines’ Newsroom Weekend.

Should the plan push through, it will be the first meeting between Duterte and Xi since the controversial Recto Bank allision of June 9. In that incident, 22 Filipino fishermen were forced to swim for their life in the open seas for hours after their fishing boat was rammed by a Chinese vessel.

Panelo said he is sure that the two leaders will discuss the incident.

Duterte and Xi last met in April during the 2nd Belt and Road Forum in China, where the Philippine leader witnessed the signing of 19 business agreements with the Asian giant.

Meanwhile, Senator Bong Go, Duterte’s former special aide, said the President “might” watch Gilas Pilipinas’ first game in the 2019 FIBA World Cup.

This year’s FIBA World Cup will be held from August 31 to September 15 in China.

The country’s national basketball team will face Serbia, Italy, and Angola in Group D. The Philippines’ first game will be against Italy on August 31 at the International Sports and Cultural Arena in Foshan, China.

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