Philippines to seal aid agreements with Japan

The Philippines and Japan will "seal" 1.5 billion yen (Php676 million) in grants from Tokyo in a forthcoming exchange of diplomatic notes, the Department of Finance said yesterday.

The grant includes bulldozers, excavators and dump trucks for the rehabilitation of Marawi City, which was devastated by months of fighting between the military and Islamic State-inspired extremists, the DOF said.

The Philippine Coast Guard will also receive from Japan radar systems, closed circuit televisions, and radio systems, the department said in a statement.

During President Rodrigo Duterte's visit to Japan last year, Finance Secretary Carlos Dominguez formalized with the Japan International Cooperation Agency a 16.5-billion yen loan for 2 large-scale patrol vessels.

Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe is expected in Manila this week for the Association of Southeast Asian Nations summit.

The 2 94-meter ships under will be on top of 10 40-meter coast guard patrol vessels that Tokyo had earlier committed to Manila, 5 of which have been delivered with the rest due by August 2018, the DOF said. Japan is also helping the Philippines build its first ever subway system.