MANILA, Sept. 28 (Xinhua) — Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte left on Wednesday for Hanoi, Vietnam for an overnight working visit.
"I will be in Vietnam to further strengthen our strategic partnership," Duterte said in his departure speech at the Manila international airport.
"I look forward to renewing the ties of friendship between the Philippines and Vietnam and reaffirm the commitment to work closer to achieve shared goals for our countries and peoples." he said.
Specifically, Duterte said that both Southeast Asian countries "will seek to identify emerging areas of partnership particularly in the fields of maritime security and law enforcement."
Seeking counter-drug cooperation is also on the president's agenda. He said the Philippines and Vietnam shall also seek ways "to advance collaboration in the campaign against illegal drugs trade, consistent with the goal of realizing an ASEAN Drug-Free Community."
"We will work with Vietnam and the rest of ASEAN in suppressing the proliferation of illegal drugs for us to secure a better future for our nest generation and the generation to come," Duterte said.
As maritime nations with rapidly developing economies, he said both countries "acknowledge the convergence of our strategic interests." Duterte will return to the Philippines on Thursday.