Japanese premier Abe arriving on Thursday for two-day official visit
Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe will arrive in Manila on Thursday before proceeding to Davao City for a two-day official visit, Malacanang said on Tuesday.
Abe is the first head of government that President Rodrigo Duterte will be welcoming in Malacanang since he assumed the presidency last June 30.
In a press conference, Presidential Spokesperson Ernesto Abella said Abe will be in Malacanang on Thursday where Duterte will host a state dinner.
Abe and the members of his official delegation is set to arrive at 2:25pm via Japan Air Force 001 at the Terminal 3 of the Ninoy Aquino International Airport.
According to Abella, Abe will meet with the business sectors in Manila and in Davao, the home city of Duterte.
In an earlier interview, Duterte said Abe's visit to the Philippines is "a friendly visit."
He recalled how he had a long meeting with Abe during his state visit to Japan in October.
"During our talks, which was really one of the longest that I have had with a sovereign of chief state, he was interested about helping us, the investments, but most of all, they also wanted to visit my place Davao City," Duterte said.
Abella added:” Apparently, Prime Minister Abe wants to visit the president’s house. So it’s interesting.”
Duterte was mayor of Davao City for about two decades.
He has noted that Davao City has the biggest number of Japanese descended Filipinos.
In December, Abe sent a study mission in the Philippines to determine how Japan could help in the war against illegal drugs by the Duterte administration. Celerina Monte/DMS