Appreciating a millennia of friendship through art
Text and photos by Dexter R. Matilla
A photo exhibition highlighting the most significant moments of high-level exchanges, economic and trade, anti-pandemic cooperation, and military exchanges between the Philippines and China opened recently at the SM Mall of Asia.
Titled “Transcend the Millennia Friendship, Greet a New Era of Golden Age,” the event happened just hours after a 7.0 magnitude earthquake hit Abra.
Chinese Ambassador Huang Xilian took the opportunity to express support for the Philippine government.
“On behalf of the Chinese Embassy, I would like to extend my thoughts and prayers to the Philippine government and the Filipino people affected by this morning’s earthquake in Luzon,” he said. “Since the pandemic broke out, China and the Philippines have helped each other, and bilateral cooperation has bucked the trend, illustrating the strong resilience and vitality of the relationship between the two countries.”
The photos showed, among others, images of projects by China Geo-Engineering Corporation, the “Brighten Up” project donated by State Grid Corporation of China, a Chinese military Y-20 heavy cargo plane bringing the donation of 600,000 doses of Sinovac Covid-19 vaccines, as well as events by the embassy such as the Community Pantry showing Amb. Huang’s visit to the Settlement House of Asociacion de Damas De Filipinas and the first-ever Chinese-Fiipino Youth Concert last June 2022.
“I would like to thank SM Supermalls for its support and cooperation as always,” Amb. Huang said in his speech. “Previously, the Embassy and SM Supermalls have jointly carried out a number of activities with themes of welcoming the Beijing Winter Olympics, celebrating the Chinese New Year, and charity bazaar, which were all splendid and memorable. In the near future, we will also set up exhibitions at SM Supermalls’ Cebu, Davao, and Baguio branches, to bring the story of China-Philippines friendship to more and farther places, letting the seeds of China-Philippines friendship take root and sprout all over the Philippines.”
Looking ahead, he continues, China will continue to prioritize the Philippines in its neighborhood diplomacy and maintain continuity and stability in its friendly policy toward the country.
“China is willing to strengthen communication with the new Philippine government, follow through with the blueprint for bilateral and friendly cooperation, and shift our relations to a higher gear,” Amb. Huang added. “In line with President Marcos’ ideas on national governance, China is ready to work with the Philippines in the four key areas of large-scale agriculture, infrastructure, energy, and cultural and people-to-people exchanges. I am confident that both sides will be committed to becoming good neighbors that help each other, good relatives that share mutual understanding and enjoy close bonds, and good partners that pursue cooperation and win-win results, so as to push for the upgrading of bilateral cooperation and usher in a new ‘golden age’ in bilateral relations.”