PRESIDENT-elect Ferdinand “Bongbong” Marcos Jr. on Thursday met with United States (US) Deputy Secretary of State Wendy Sherman as the high-ranking diplomat embarked on an Asian tour this month.
Sherman, the US State Department’s number two, said she had a discussion with Marcos about the longstanding bilateral ties between Washington and Manila.
“I was pleased to meet and congratulate President-elect Marcos. We discussed strengthening our longstanding alliance, expanding people-to-people ties, deepening our economic relationship, advancing human rights, and preserving a free and open Indo-Pacific,” Sherman said in a Twitter post.
Sherman’s Manila visit is part of her 10-day Asian swing that would also see her step foot on South Korea, Vietnam, and Laos.
The US State Department had said Sherman’s visit to the region “reflects the United States’ continued commitment to the Indo-Pacific.”
Apart from Marcos, the US State Department said that Sherman will also meet “senior members of the incoming and outgoing administrations to discuss new ways to deepen the bilateral US-Philippines Alliance”.
Sherman’s visit to the region also follows the US-Asean Summit, as well as US President Joe Biden’s visit to South Korea and Japan.
Biden expressed hope to expand the Philippines-US bilateral relations following a call with Marcos.
Marcos, for his part, had highlighted the importance of Philippine-US ties in the weeks before his election victory.
The US is a longtime treaty ally of the Philippines.