PH, New Zealand welcomes signing of defense cooperation
PH, New Zealand welcomes signing of defense cooperation
PH, New Zealand welcomes signing of defense cooperation
by Karen Ow-Yong10 June 2024
Photo courtesy of DFA-OPD.

MANILA – The Philippines and New Zealand welcomes the signing of a defense pact with the aim of enhancing future military and maritime engagements between the two countries.

In his remarks during the official visit of New Zealand Deputy Prime Minister and Foreign Affairs Minister, Rt. Hon. Winston Peters in Manila, Department of Foreign Affairs (DFA) Secretary Enrique Manalo welcomed the signing of the Mutual Logistics Support Arrangement (MLSA), calling it a “pivotal document that will greatly enhance future military engagements between our nations.”

Minister Peter’s post on X confirms the agreement was signed today by Department of National Defence (DND) Assistant Secretary Marita Yoro and Commodore Maxime Lawes of the New Zealand Defence Force.


Minister Peters and Secretary Manalo met on Monday to discuss strengthening of bilateral relations, exploring opportunities to deepen existing cooperation in defense, economy, renewable energy and people-to-people linkages, among others.

The two officials also tackled regional developments of mutual concern to both counties, the DFA said.

Manalo thanked New Zealand for its steadfast support for the challenges the Philippines is facing in the South China Sea, and affirmed the country’s commitment to uphold the rule of law as a pillar to achieving peace and security in the region.

Earlier this year, President Ferdinand Marcos, Jr. and New Zealand Prime Minister Christopher Luxon expressed their commitment to sign a MLSA and conclude the Status of Visiting Forces Agreement (SOVFA) within the year during PM Luxon’s two-day official visit to the Philippines last April.


In a joint statement, Marcos and Luxon reaffirmed their commitment to sustaining maritime security cooperation, including bilateral and multilateral activities at sea, port, calls/visits and capacity building efforts.

The Philippines currently has visiting forces agreements with treaty ally the United States and Australia, as well as a Reciprocal Access Agreement with Japan that is expected to be signed soon, according to the Department of National Defense (DND).

Such defense agreements come amidst rising tensions surrounding the West Philippine Sea and South China Sea, as China continuously asserts its expansive maritime claims.

A Hague-based arbitral court invalidated China’s maritime claim and affirmed the Philippines’ sovereign rights over its exclusive economic zone (EZZ) in 2016, but China refuses to recognize the landmark ruling.

listen Live
DZRH News Live Streaming
Most Read