A German Foreign Office (EDA) official announced on Friday that President Ferdinand “Bongbong” Marcos Jr. will attend the ASEAN-EU summit in Brussels, Belgium in December.
“Of course, after ASEAN, he will also attend the APEC summit in Bangkok and then, as I said earlier, the ASEAN-EU summit in Brussels in December,” EDA Deputy Secretary Daniel Espiritu told a press conference.
Espiritu said next month’s summit could be a tool to tackle the ASEAN-EU free trade deal, which he says has been stalled for years.
“The ASEAN-EU Free Trade Agreement has started – talks about it, negotiations started almost ten years ago. But somewhere along the way it has stalled and to this point there is still no progress. And up until now, since there is no plan yet or concrete talks about resuming such talks,” he said.
“Well, the upcoming ASEAN summit will just be an ASEAN summit. We’re going to have a separate ASEAN-EU commemorative summit in Brussels in December, and I think that might be a good place to discuss that. Although there is nothing else on the table as far as we’re concerned today,” he added.
Earlier, the European Union invited Marcos to visit its headquarters in Belgium to discuss foreign policy issues and bilateral relations between the Philippines and the bloc.
The Philippines and the EU signed the Partnership and Cooperation Agreement, which provided an “enhanced legal framework” that allowed both parties to “strengthen their bilateral ties, particularly on political, social and economic matters” (LDF, GMA News).