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PH, New Zealand sign education agreement

15 November 2017

Jacinda Ardern has wrapped up the East Asia Summit with a 20 minute conversation with her Australian counterpart Malcolm Turnbull, where they discussed further proposals to resolve the ongoing situation on Manus Island.

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau delivered a sales pitch to core members of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations on Tuesday in hope they will open the door to Canada joining their exclusive and influential circle.

CHED chairwoman Patricia Licuanan and David Strachan, New Zealand ambassador to the Philippines, signed the agreement.

The memorandum tackles the comparative analysis of the two countries' bachelor's degrees, which, according to Duterte, means the Philippines "can have access to the quality of education in New Zealand".

Ardern arrived in the country on Sunday, November 12, to attend the 31st Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) Summit and Related Meetings.

Ardern meanwhile said she was pleased to know that there will soon be a direct flight to New Zealand.

During the bilateral meeting, President Duterte mentioned that New Zealand is host to more than 50,000 Filipinos, to which Prime Minister Ardern said that "the Filipino community is a strong community in New Zealand".

Duterte, in response, told Ardern that this was the first time he has heard of the news.

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"He was fantastic", Ardern said.

With many detainees complaining of illness brought about by the unsanitary conditions in the camp, the UN High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) urged Australia to allow 150 of them to resettle in New Zealand.

Ardern added that New Zealand had its first Filipino candidate in their party, Romeo Udanga, to be a member of Parliament during the last election."He did a phenomenal job.

It's a strong, buoyant community and well-loved", the lady Prime Minister said. He, however, lost in the polls. Duterte and Ardern sat for bilateral talks at the summit's conclusion on Tuesday.

She said there have been too many alleged killings in the country since Duterte assumed office.

"There have been attempts from the global community as my understanding [but] those have not been accepted", she added.

Officials from Australia and New Zealand would also start laying the groundwork for a screening process that could be quickly put in place if and when Australia accepted the offer to take 150 refugees.

Malacañang is yet to confirm whether the issue of human rights or EJKs was raised during the meeting.

PH, New Zealand sign education agreement