President Ferdinand Marcos Jr. said he is hoping to hold a bilateral meeting with US President Joseph Biden on the sidelines of the 77th United Nations General Assembly (UNGA) in New York.
“I am hoping to be able to meet President Joseph Biden and other world leaders on the sides of the UN General Assembly. Aside from President Biden, I think we will be able to meet with some other heads of state and as I said some heads of big companies,” Mr. Marcos said in a speech before members of the Filipino community in New Jersey on Sunday (Monday in Manila).
“After all, our bilateral alliance with the United States is possibly as important a policy as there is in the Philippines. Our relations with the United States remain strong and I believe we will make them stronger in the coming years,” he added.
Philippine Ambassador to the US Jose Manuel Romualdez earlier said a meeting between the two leaders remains “uncertain.”
He said what is confirmed is that Biden would host a “traditional” reception for all heads of state who will be attending the UNGA on Sept. 21 or a day after Mr. Marcos delivers his UNGA speech.
Mr. Marcos will be the first Philippine president to deliver a speech in person at the UNGA since the remarks of the late President Benigno Aquino III in 2010.
Mr. Marcos will be the second speaker of the afternoon session (3:15 p.m. Sept. 20, New York time), following Honduras.
Romualdez said the President will likely meet with six heads of state during his week-long trip to the United States, including talks with Japanese Prime Minister Fumio Kishida, Malaysian Prime Minister Ismail Sabri Yaakob, and EU President Ursula von der Leyen.
“I think there are two others that are awaiting confirmation, so he’ll probably have at least six to eight meetings with heads of state,” Romualdez said.
Mr. Marcos said he will “share our views on a number of global concerns and the role the Philippines will play as a responsible member of the family of nations in addressing these concerns” during the UNGA meeting.
The President is expected to highlight his administration’s thrust for economic recovery, food security, and agricultural productivity.
In his pre-departure speech Sunday, he said he also intends to present to the UNGA “the crisis facing our world as opportunities for our nation to take meaningful actions rooted and united by a common purpose—to promote peace, prosperity, and sustainable development.”
Around 152 other heads of state and government will participate in the High-Level General Debate, with the theme “A watershed moment: transformative solutions to interlocking challenges.”