Aquino lands in Japan, starts 4-day state visit
TOKYO – President Aquino landed in Japan Tuesday afternoon for a four-day state visit, his first to the Philippines’ long-time Asian ally.
The President arrived aboard chartered Philippine Airlines flight PR-001 at 3:18 p.m. to a red carpet welcome, received by officials from the Japanese Foreign Ministry, the Imperial Household and the Philippine Embassy here.
He is the first foreign leader invited to undertake a state visit in Japan this year.
The arrival honors offered a preview to what is expected to be colorful welcome rites in honor of Aquino at the Imperial Palace Wednesday), where he is to be met by Emperor Akihito and Empress Michiko.
The President’s delegation includes his top security, trade and economic officials here for a series of meetings aimed at increasing two-way trade between and bolstering defense ties between the two sides amid mutual concerns over disputed waters being claimed by China.
Officials on the President’s delegation include Trade Secretary Gregory Domingo, Transportation Secretary Emilio Abaya, Defense Secretary Voltaire Gazmin, Public Works Secretary Rogelio Singson, Finance Secretary Purisima, Socio Economic Planning Secretary Arsenio Balisacan, Cabinet Secretary Jose Rene Almendras, Communications Secretary Herminio Coloma and Philippine Economic Zone Authority Director General Lilia de Lima.
Aquino’s hectic schedule includes a series of business meetings, an address to the National Diet, and a meeting with Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe, and a series of business and investment meetings.
The President had previously visited Japan five times during his presidency on official and working visits. AC
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