Philippines, Russia to explore military logistics cooperation

MANILA — The Philippines and Russia are looking at possible “military logistics cooperation” as the two countries expand their defense and economic ties, a government statement said on Wednesday.

The Philippines is upgrading its modest defense capability and is keen on engaging Russia in military logistics, including possible procurement of defense equipment, training and technology transfer.

Philippine Defense Secretary Delfin Lorenzana met with Alexander Fomin, director of Russia’s Federal Service for Military-Technical Cooperation in Moscow on Monday.

On the instruction of Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte, Lorenzana visited Moscow to explore prospects for military-technical cooperation between the Philippines and Russia.

This is the first ever visit of a Philippine defense secretary to Russia since the establishment of the bilateral diplomatic relations in 1976, according to the statement issued by the Department of Foreign Affairs in Manila.

“Fomin warmly welcomed Lorenzana, stating that his visit is indeed a good follow-up to the fruitful meeting between Duterte and (Russian) President Vladimir Putin in Lima, Peru on November 19, at the sidelines of the (Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation) summit,” the statement said.

It noted that Fomin emphasized that Russia is ready to cooperate with and supply the Philippines with whatever defense products it needs, adding that Russia can offer “a wide range of quality and reasonably priced defense products.”

The Philippine foreign department said that Lorenzana and Fomin have agreed to continue inter-agency discussions to move the cooperation forward. PNA/