(MENAFN - Kuwait News Agency (KUNA)) KUWAIT, May 11 (KUNA) -- Kuwaiti Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Foreign Affairs Sheikh Sabah Al-Khaled Al-Hamad Al-Sabah has said that Kuwait cherishes the more than five-decade close bilateral ties with the Philippines.
Sheikh Sabah Al-Khaled told a press conference at the Foreign Ministry Friday that he and the visiting Philippine Foreign Affairs Secretary Alan Cayetano, and an accompanying delegation, held fruitful talks and reviewed the framework of bilateral cooperation in all fields and on all levels.
He added that they had signed an agreement on employing household helpers demonstrating eagerness to overcome the consequences of the recent "exceptional circumstances" in bilateral ties.
The minister noted that Kuwait is hosting up to 250,000 Filipinos, and appreciates their valuable contributions to all fields and sectors in the country.
He also reiterated Kuwait's keenness on security and safety of all expat communities in the country, about 195 nationalities, enjoying dignified living conditions.
He stressed that Kuwaitis and non-Kuwaitis are all protected by law and granted due legal advantages and guarantees.
The fact that Filipino President dispatched Foreign Affairs Secretary, Secretary of Labor and Employment and his Special Presidential Envoy, to Kuwait in one week, reflected keenness on having normal ties with Kuwait.
Kuwait is very eager to reciprocate and to overcome the recent events, focusing on consolidating ties with the Philippines, he said.
The two sides discussed an action plan for a visit by Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte to Kuwait in the near future, the minister noted.
They also agreed on the "necessity of the presence of two ambassadors in the capital of each." For his part, Foreign Affairs Secretary Alan Cayetano conveyed the President Rodrigo's greetings to His Highness the Amir Sheikh Sabah Al-Ahmad Al-Jaber Al-Sabah. He also commended the "fruitful" meeting he and an accompanying delegation held with Sheikh Sabah Al-Khaled.
The two sides discussed, and settled, a host of pending issues between the two nations, and agreed on the necessity of proceeding ahead on backing and promoting bilateral relations, Secretary Alan said, noting that Kuwait assisted Philippines much in the past.
He also revealed that his country would soon name a new ambassador to Kuwait, saying that many problems were caused by poor contacts and misunderstanding "but the strength of historical bilateral ties will overcome this." The two countries have agreed on further enhancing these ties and discussing all pending issues, as well as cooperating on files and topics on common concern, especially the challenges the world is facing, with terrorism on top.
According to Alan, the President stresses the necessity of conforming to the laws enforced in host countries.
He also quashed press reports attributing false information to Pilipino officials on Kuwait, saying they had never said Kuwait was a bad place to work in.
Ninety-nine percent of the Filipino community is Kuwait do not face problems, and few cases cannot be generalized, Alan added, noting that they encourage Filipinos to work in Kuwait and contribute to its development.
Secretary of Labor and Employment Silvestre Bello will stay in Kuwait over the coming days to discuss a host of issues, he said. Silvestre is expected to submit a recommendation to the President to lift a ban on skilled labor to Kuwait.
As for domestic helpers, discussions will take place after the agreement signed today.
The Foreign Affairs Secretary invited Kuwait to boost investments in the Republic of Philippines. He also asked Kuwait to help in settling the issue of Mindanao to realize peace there. (end) nma.msa