U.S.-Philippine Relations Rebound Under Trump

Trump and Duterte meet in Manila

In the Philippines Monday, President Donald Trump will try to maintain momentum as the U.S. rebuilds its relationship with Manila amidst rising Chinese influence. Ties between the two nations endured a fracture at the end of the Obama administration, due to Duterte’s draconian anti-drug policies and a demonstrated warmness toward China. However, a friendly relationship between Trump and Duterte – and key U.S. security assistance to the Philippines over the summer – have demonstrated the advantages of the U.S. alliance to the “Trump of the East.”

  • For decades, the United States and the Philippines have boasted one of the strongest relationships in Southeast Asia. Their military alliance is based on the 1947 Military Base agreement, the 1951 Mutual Defense Treaty and the 1998 Visiting Forces agreement.
  • In 2014, Washington and Manila signed the Enhanced Defense Cooperation Agreement (EDCA) in 2014, a ten-year deal that allows a strengthened U.S. military presence in the Philippines.

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