Marcos off to Brunei, Singapore next week

At a glance

  • The Department of Foreign Affairs (DFA) said this swing visit demonstrates the President’s commitment to ensure a peaceful, secure, and prosperous Philippines.

President Marcos is set to embark on a State Visit to Brunei Darussalam and a Working Visit to Singapore from May 28 to 31, to promote partnerships with both countries and to convey the Philippines’ positions regarding regional developments.

marcos airport departure
File photo

The Department of Foreign Affairs (DFA) said this ahead of the President’s two-country visit to Southeast Asian nations next week. This would be his second visit to Brunei Darussalam and his fourth time in Singapore.

“This swing visit demonstrates the President’s commitment to ensure a peaceful, secure, and prosperous Philippines for all of our country here and abroad,” it said.


Brunei Visit


In a pre-departure briefing in Malacañang on Friday, May 24, Palace press briefer Daphne Oseña-Paez said Marcos, who will be undertaking his first State Visit to Brunei Darussalam, will have a bilateral meeting with His Majesty, Sultan Hassanal Bolkiah, and other officials of the Sultanate.

In the same briefing, DFA Office of the Asian and Pacific Affairs assistant secretary Aileen Mendiola-Rau said Marcos will discuss economic cooperation, citing Brunei being a powerhouse in terms of energy.

“This State Visit is in line with the President’s commitment to continue exploring avenues for economic growth and job opportunities for Filipinos as the business forum is aimed to boost trade and investments into the country,” she said.

“Our ties are multifaceted, encompassing cooperation in defense and security, maritime, agriculture, and trade, as well as people-to-people relations,” she added.

Meanwhile, Rau said the DFA is finalizing the text for several memoranda of understanding (MOUs) to be signed between the Philippines and Brunei Darussalam during the President’s visit there from May 28 to 29.

“I can inform you that the MOUs that we are working with the Brunei side would include priority areas ranging from agriculture to food security, maritime cooperation, and tourism,” she said.

In addition, the President will attend a business forum where he will meet with top members of the business sector to promote trade and investment relations between the Philippines and Brunei Darussalam.

Lastly, President Marcos will meet members of the Filipino community to highlight the contribution of the over 20,000 Filipinos currently residing in Brunei.

Marcos’ visit to Brunei is upon the invitation of Sultan Hassanal Bolkiah and marks the 40th year of the establishment of the bilateral ties between the two countries.


Singapore Visit


Meanwhile, President Marcos will be delivering the keynote address at the International Institute for Strategic Studies (IISS) Shangri-La Dialogue 2024 in Singapore on May 31.

The 21st edition of the annual Shangri-La Dialogue will be participated in by around 500 defense and military officials and experts as well as business leaders from around 40 countries to discuss critical security challenges around the globe.

According to DFA spokesperson Ambassador Ma. Teresita Daza, the dialogue will provide a good platform for defense ministers, military chiefs, government officials, and security experts to discuss and address regional and global security challenges.

In the same briefing, Rau pointed out that only one leader delivers the keynote address every year, and President Marcos was given the distinct honor for this year’s Shangri-La Dialogue.

While in Singapore, the President will meet with the country’s new leadership, President Tharman Shanmugaratnam and Prime Minister Lawrence Wong. Marcos will also have a brief meeting with former prime minister and current senior minister Lee Hsien Loong.

Marcos’ visit to Singapore is upon the invitation of former Singapore prime minister Lee, in time for the 55th anniversary of the establishment of the Philippines-Singapore diplomatic relations this year.