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World | National

President Aquino leaves for South Korea state visit

President Benigno Aquino III, accompanied by Armed Forces of the Philippines vice chief of staff Lt. Gen. Alan Luga, troops the line at the Ninoy Aquino International Airport Terminal 2 Thursday before leaving for a two-day state visit to South Korea. (Photo by Rey Baniquet, Malacanang Photo Bureau)
The online news portal of TV5

MANILA -- President Benigno Aquino III left for the Republic of South Korea Thursday morning for a two-day state visit.

Aquino was accompanied by Senate President Franklin Drilon, Defense Secretary Voltaire Gazmin, Finance Secretary Cesar Purisima, Energy Secretary Jericho Petilla, Trade and Industry Secretary Gregory Domingo, Foreign Affairs Secretary Albert del Rosario, Presidential Communications Operations Office Secretary Sonny Coloma, Secretary to the Cabinet Jose Rene Almendras, and Presidential Management Staff chief Julia Abad.

In his departure address, Aquino said the visit aims to strengthen the long-standing ties with South Korea and to attract more tourists and investors from there.

"Tayo naman po ay tutungo ngayon sa South Korea, upang asikasuhin naman ang kinabukasan habang inaasikaso natin ang kasalukuyan. Alam po ng lahat na marami pong investors na galing sa Korea. Layon po natin lalo pang dagdagan ang kanilang investments sa ating pong bansa (We will go to South Korea to take care of the future while we take care of the present. We know that there are a lot of investors from Korea. We aim to have more investments from Korea in our country),” he said.

Palakasin rin sa larangan ng turismo, na siyang nagiging daan ng kabuhayan ng marami po nating mga kababayan. At ang muli po, ay lalong paigtingin pa ang ating ugnayan sa bansang South Korea sa pamamagitan ng marami pang agreements na ating inaasahan mapirmahan itong araw na ito (We will strengthen tourism, which has been a livelihood for our compatriots. And again, we will intensify our relations with South Korea through various agreements expected to be signed to today)," he added

Aquino will meet with South Korean President Park Geun-hye at the Blue House, where they will discuss regional and bilateral issues.

These include political dialogue, defense cooperation, trade and investments relations, official development assistance, consular and labor cooperation, and people-to-people exchanges.

A memorandum of understanding on defense cooperation will also be signed between the two countries.

Aquino will be honored with a state dinner Thursday night.

The president will also visit the War Memorial and receive a recognition on behalf of his father, the late Senator Benigno "Ninoy" Aquino II, who covered the Korean War as a correspondent for the Manila Times.

He will also meet with the Filipino community in Seoul on Friday.