Japan PM: 10 patrol ships for Phl Coast Guard soon
Camille Diola (The Philippine Star) - October 10, 2013 - 10:23am

MANILA, Philippines - Japanese Prime Minister Shinzō Abe has confirmed that Japan will give 10 patrol ships to the Philippine Coast Guard, putting an end to rumors since 2012.

Kyodo News quoted Japanese officials on Wednesday as saying that Abe will push through with plans to assist Manila in its efforts to develop its coast guard amid sea disputes of the two countries against China.

The prime minister reportedly told this to President Beningo Aquino III in a bilateral meeting in Brunei Darussalam on the sidelines of the an Association of Southeast Asian Nations summit

Abe added that the transfer process for the new vessels is swiftly under way.

Cmdr. Armand Balilo, Coast Guard spokesman, had said last July that officials are still in talks with Japanese authorities for the acquisition of the vessels by 2014.

“The two sides have agreed that all 10 patrol boats will be 40 meters (131 feet) long. But they are still talking about other specifications," Balilo said in a previous report.

Another report had said that each of the vessel Japan will donate cost $11 million (about P473 million each).

Abe and Aquino also agreed to have stronger financial and economic exchanges.

The Japanese leader also vowed that Japan will assist Thailand in its construction of a high-speed rail infrastructure.

ABE ABE AND AQUINO ARMAND BALILO ASSOCIATION OF SOUTHEAST ASIAN NATIONS BALILO BRUNEI DARUSSALAM COAST GUARD JAPANESE PRIME MINISTER SHINZ KYODO NEWS PHILIPPINE COAST GUARD PRESIDENT BENINGO AQUINO
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