Joint Declaration on Enhanced Partnership between the Philippines and France

Joint Declaration
on the Enhanced Partnership
between the Republic of the Philippines
and the French Republic

[Malacañan Palace on February 26, 2015]

  1. We, the President of the Philippines Benigno S. Aquino III and the President of the French Republic Francois Hollande, agree to expand and strengthen bilateral relations and elevate the bilateral relationship to an enhanced partnership between the Philippines and France on the historic occasion of the first visit to the Philippines by an incumbent President of France made on invitation of President Aquino during his first visit to France on 17 -18 September 2014.
  1. We affirm that the Philippines and France shared the same commitment to democracy, the rule of law, the maintenance of peace and international security and to common objectives to promote inclusive economic growth and sustainable development.
  1. On international peace and security, we affirm our opposition to any acquisition or claim, by coercion or force, of any or all territory of a State by another State, in violation of international law, especially the Charter of the United Nations.
  1. We reiterate the importance of maintaining peace and stability in Southeast Asia and promoting maritime security, freedom of navigation and the peaceful settlement of disputes in accordance with international law, including the United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea (UNCLOS). We call for a full and effective implementation of the Declaration on the Conduct of Parties in the South China Sea and the early conclusion of a Code of Conduct in the South China Sea in fostering peace and stability.
  1. We condemn terrorism in all its forms and call on the international community to work together to fight this scourge to mankind.
  1. Acknowledging that our two countries have entered a new, more dynamic and future-oriented era in the development of bilateral relations, we commit to maintain this positive momentum and to mobilize our respective governments towards this end. We believe that upgrading the bilateral relationship would be highly beneficial to both our countries and peoples. From this perspective, we agree to encourage the active participation of various stakeholders, such as local and regional governments, the business community, the private sector and civil society, in strengthening bilateral ties.
  1. We welcome the promising outlook for the development of enhanced economic and trade relations in numerous industries of the future. We welcome, in particular, the development of new fields of cooperation and the conclusion of agreements in the areas of renewable energy, sustainable development, urban transportation and infrastructure, and the management of natural resources.
  1. We wish to develop mutually beneficial bilateral cooperation in the area of health, in particular, in the fight against emerging and re-emerging diseases due to, inter alia, the effects of climate change.
  1. We hope to promote exchanges between the French and Filipino peoples, particularly the youth, through the intensification of academic exchanges. In this regard, we welcome the conclusion of agreements in higher education and research, and in the development of the tourism sector in the Philippines which would increase tourist flows between our countries.
  1. Our enhanced partnership will also be pursued through regular bilateral political consultations between our Foreign Ministries, through meetings of the Joint Economic Committee, and through the framework provided by the bilateral Defense Cooperation Arrangement between our Defense Ministries.
  1. We stress the importance of strengthening the fight against climate change and its impacts and agree that the Philippines and France must work together to encourage the adoption of a universal and equitable agreement during the 21st Conference of the Parties to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (COP21) to be hosted by France at the end of the year in Paris. We, therefore, took the initiative to launch the Manila Call to Action on Climate Change, which takes into account the needs and concerns of the most vulnerable countries.
  2. In that spirit, the Government of the French Republic will extend to the Government of the Republic of the Philippines, through the French Development Agency, a loan of at least fifty million euros to contribute to the implementation of prevention and reconstruction actions in response to natural disasters resulting from the effects of climate change or from other causes.