Duterte welcomes Indian president Kovind in Malacañang

Arianne Merez, ABS-CBN News

Posted at Oct 18 2019 04:29 PM | Updated as of Oct 18 2019 08:00 PM

Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte and Indian counterpart Ram Nath Kovind raise each other’s hands after attending a joint press conference in Malacanang Palace in Manila on October 28, 2019. The 74-year-old Indian leader, who arrived in Manila on Thursday, will have a bilateral meeting with Duterte and will witness the signing of agreements covering trade, and cultural and people-to-people engagement. Ted Alljibe, AFP

MANILA- President Rodrigo Duterte received on Friday in Malacañang Indian President Ram Nath Kovind, who is in the Philippines for a 5-day state visit.

Kovind is the third Indian president to visit the Philippines since the establishment of diplomatic relations between the 2 countries in 1949. The last was Abdul Kalam in 2006.

Filipino children waving Philippine and Indian flags welcomed Kovind’s vehicle at the Malacañang complex.

But due to light rains, arrival honors for Kovind at the Palace grounds were cancelled and he was instead greeted by President Duterte at the reception hall of Malacañang.

The 74-year-old Indian leader, who arrived in Manila on Thursday, will have a bilateral meeting with Duterte and will witness the signing of agreements covering trade, and cultural and people-to-people engagement. 

The two leaders will also issue a joint statement following their meeting, which will be capped off by a state banquet.

During his stay in the Philippines, Kovind will also grace a business summit with Filipino and Indian traders, and meet with Filipino beneficiaries of the Mahaveer Philippine Foundation, a foundation that provides prosthetic legs designed by Indian sculptor Ram Chander Sharma.

He will also meet with the Indian community in Taguig City before flying back home.

India was the 15th trading partner of the Philippines last year with trade valued at P109.9 billion.