What is the effect of Philippine 'separation' with US?

MANILA, Philippines - President Rodrigo Duterte’s announcement to severe military and economic ties with the United States of America has signaled an end to the country’s 70-year alliance with the superpower in favor of China and Russia.

What is effect of Philippine 'separation' with US?

The firebrand leader’s shocking decision to its oldest and strongest ally earned mixed reactions from experts, critics and ordinary netizens.

Reduced Aid and Trade for PH

According to a Filipino political expert from the Golden Gate University, Professor Jay Gonzalez, President Rodrigo Duterte’s decision to cut ties with the United States of America has several political and economic implications for both countries involved.

"Politically, one, you would see here is reduced economic and military assistance in the billions of dollars via programs administered by USAID or the agency for international development and of course you're gonna see less training materials, support from the US Department of Defense," Gonzalez told ABS-CBN News.

In terms of economic implications, Gonzalez said that there will be decreased trade with “major trading partner, investment and BPO partner."

Creating Unnecessary Uncertainty, Confusion

As for a US Embassy official, Duterte’s announcement has created an “unnecessary uncertainty.”

However, US Embassy press attache Molly Koscina emphasized that the US will honor its alliance commitments and treaty obligations. They also expect the Philippines to do the same.

Meanwhile, US State Department spokesman John Kirby said that the 71-year-old leader’s explosive statement has caused confusion as he has not made any of his statements official policy. He added that the US government will be expecting an explanation on Duterte’s controversial remarks.

Separation: A Disaster for US

A report published on the US-based Foreign Policy revealed that the shift of alliance of the Philippines to China is a “potential disaster” for the US.

Written by Council on Foreign Relations senior Fellow Max Boot, the article suggests that the US will find it difficult to impede Beijing’s moves in the South China and East China seas.

"If the Philippines becomes a Chinese satrapy, by contrast, Washington will find itself hard-pressed to hold the 'first island chain' in the Western Pacific that encompasses the Japanese archipelago, the Ryukyus, Taiwan and the Philippine archipelago,” the report said.

He added that the US Navy will find it much more difficult to protect the most important sea lanes in the world. Boot noted that “$5.3 trillion in goods passes through the South China Sea, $1.2 trillion of which is US trade."

--Mini, The Summit Express

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