MANILA, March 21 (Xinhua) -- The Philippines and Russia have finalized their naval cooperation agreement which calls for more joint training exercises and port visits this year, the Philippine navy chief said on Thursday.
Vice Adm. Robert Empedrad of the Philippine Navy met with visiting Russian Navy chief Adm. Vladimir Korolyov on Wednesday to discuss the agreement. Empedrad said both sides are scheduled to sign the agreement during his visit to Russia in July.
"We came up with an agreement for deepening cooperation between the Russian Navy and the Philippine Navy ... We finalized the agreement and we are going to sign it during my next visit to Russia in July," Empedrad said.
He said the signing of the agreement will coincide with the celebration of the Russian Navy's foundation anniversary. A Philippines Navy ship will be joining the fleet review as part of the celebration, he added.
Empedrad said the agreement will pave the way for "more engagements between the two navies, like more port visits, exchanges in training."
Korolyov arrived in Manila on Monday to reciprocate Empedrad's visit to Russia in August last year.
Captain Jonathan Zata, the director of the Philippine Naval Public Affairs Office, said Korolyov's visit "epitomizes the deepening friendship between the Philippine and Russian Navies established in recent years."