HomeInternational GeopoliticsIndia reiterates loan offer for Philippines defense modernization : Philippines Govt Media

India reiterates loan offer for Philippines defense modernization : Philippines Govt Media

India reiterates loan offer for Philippines defense modernization : Philippines Govt Media
External Affairs Minister S. Jaishankar with Secretary of Foreign Affairs of Philippines Enrique Manalo, in New Delhi. (Credit: PTI Photo)

India reiterates loan offer for Philippines defense modernization : Philippines Govt Media

MANILA (Philippines): The Indian government has reiterated its concessional line of credit offer to help the Philippines fund its defence modernization program.
The offer was floated anew during the 5th India-Philippines Joint Commission on Bilateral Cooperation (JCBC) led by Foreign Affairs Secretary Enrique Manalo and his counterpart Indian Minister of External Affairs S. Jaishankar on June 29 in New Delhi.
“On defence cooperation, both Ministers expressed keen interest to continue to work together in this sector, including through the regular or upgraded official level interaction among defence agencies, opening of the resident Defence Attaché office in Manila, consideration of India’s offer for concessional Line of Credit to meet Philippines’ defence requirements, acquisition of naval assets, and expansion of training and joint exercises on maritime security and disaster response, among others,” the joint statement read.
The line of credit being offered by India is a soft loan provided on concessional interest rates to developing countries based on the national priorities of the borrowing countries.
In a text message, India Ambassador to the Philippines Shambhu Kumaran said the broad terms of the Export-Import Bank of India (EXIM Bank) line credits are 1.75 percent, with a 20-year tenor and five-year moratorium.
“There is no specific amount indicated at present, it will depend on the requirements of the Philippines side,” he said.
“The offer was first made when (former) Defence Secretary Delfin Lorenzana visited India in 2018, and reiterated today,” he added.
The ongoing Armed Forces of the Philippines modernization program is now on Horizon 3, which is slated for 2023 to 2028.
Earlier, President Ferdinand R. Marcos Jr. reaffirmed his commitment to beef up the country’s defence capabilities, saying the Horizon 3 is “significantly devoted to the naval aspect” of the military operations.
Meanwhile, Manalo and Jaishankar emphasized the importance of maritime domain awareness and called for the early operationalization of the Standard Operating Procedure for the White Shipping Agreement between the Indian Navy and the Philippines Coast Guard (PCG).
A memorandum of understanding on Enhanced Maritime Cooperation between the Indian Coast Guard and PCG is also in the pipeline.
During the meeting, the two officials also discussed a possible MOU on Cooperation in Preventing and Combating Terrorism and Transnational Crime, while recognizing the two as common security threats.
On regional issues, Manalo and Jaishankar recognized that both countries have a shared interest in a free, open and inclusive Indo-Pacific region.
“They underlined the need for peaceful settlement of disputes and for adherence to international law, especially the UNCLOS and the 2016 Arbitral Award on the South China Sea in this regard,” the joint statement read.
Both ministers noted the expanding scope of India-Philippines ties and agreed to work together to further strengthen the bilateral partnership.
Apart from defence and security, the two also discussed wide-ranging partnership spanning developmental sectors such as health, agriculture, tourism, the digital economy, and trade.
Both sides agreed to hold the next round of Joint Committee on Bilateral Cooperation in the Philippines on mutually convenient dates.
The JCBC is a ministerial-level platform held every two years to discuss issues involving Philippine-India relations. India reiterates loan offer for Philippines defense modernization : Philippines Govt Media India reiterates loan offer for Philippines defense modernization : Philippines Govt Media India reiterates loan offer for Philippines defense modernization : Philippines Govt Media India reiterates loan offer for Philippines defense modernization : Philippines Govt Media India reiterates loan offer for Philippines defense modernization : Philippines Govt Media India reiterates loan offer for Philippines defense modernization : Philippines Govt Media IgMp

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