China's development over the past 59 years has been "truly impressive" and the country is more and more engaged with Asia and the rest of the world in pursuit of peace, progress and prosperity, a Philippine official said on Monday.
China's transformation since Oct. 1, 1949 has been truly impressive, said Philippine Secretary of Foreign Affairs Alberto G. Romulo on the occasion of the 59th anniversary of the founding of the People's Republic of China.
"Barely two days ago, the world witnessed China's first successful space walk from its own space craft, Shengzhou-7," said the Secretary of Foreign Affairs.
The Shenzhou-7 manned spacecraft that carried three taikonauts blasted off Thursday evening and flew 68 hours in space which included a spacewalk on Saturday.
"Shenzhou-7's return to earth within the last 24 hours heralds a new phase in scientific exploration and accomplishment for China," he added.
"And just last month, in August, the world watched in awe at the showcase of a different-kind one that celebrated friendly competition and human achievements: The 2008 Beijing Summer Olympics," Romulo said.
The 2008 Summer Olympic Games was a major international multi-sport event that took place in China's capital city of Beijing from Aug. 8 to Aug. 24, 2008. A total of 10,500 athletes competed in 302 events in 28 sports.
"With its 'Opening-up' policy 30 years ago, China has evolved into a global economic power that is deepening its engagement with Asia and the rest of the world in pursuit of greater peace, progress and prosperity," Romulo said.
The Philippines' relations with China have grown "parallel with China's comprehensive national strength," said the Secretary of Foreign Affairs.
"During President Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo's term, we have achieved tremendous progress in many areas," Romulo said.
"The frequent high-level exchanges and contacts between our leaders have deepened mutual trust and confidence," he said.
Meanwhile, China is now the Philippines' third largest trading partner and for the first seven months this year, the trade volume between the two countries has reached 18.4 billion U.S. dollars, an increase of 10.8 percent compared with that of the same period in 2007, according to data from the two governments.
"We are now reaping the fruits manifested by the encouraging growth in our bilateral trade and investments," Romulo said.
Besides, the bilateral relations have deepened and grown in terms of defense and military cooperation, science and technology, agriculture, education, and culture, said the Secretary of Foreign Affairs.
"With our close historic ties as the anchor, I am confident that we can expect more years of cooperative and fruitful relations between the Filipino and Chinese people," he added.