Russia has offered its assistance to the Philippines over its energy needs amid soaring gas prices, reported One News.
This followed Russian Ambassador Marat Pavlov's meeting with president-elect Ferdinand Marcos Jr. on Monday (June 13), where he passed on a congratulatory message from Russian President Vladimir Putin.
Pavlov told reporters, "During the meeting, we discussed these areas of cooperation and we found out that in this turbulent period of our life, the Russian Federation could extend its hand to help the Philippines in much needed oil, gas and other sources of energy."
The envoy added, "So, we are ready to increase our collaboration. And as far as I understand, the president-elect has also confirmed the same intention of the Philippine side (and he) would like to continue his independent (foreign) policy and to cooperate with the Russian Federation."
Like many countries, the Philippines has been hit by a series of oil price hikes triggered largely by Russia’s invasion of Ukraine from early 2022. Prices of basic goods have spiked as a result, while a new wave of big-time oil price hikes is forecast this week. Diesel prices are expected to increase by P4.30 to P4.50 per liter and gasoline prices by P1.50 to P1.60 per liter.
During the presidential election campaign, Marcos initially maintained a neutral position on the Russia-Ukraine war. However, he later issued a statement that he is united with the rest of world in calling for Russia “to respect Ukraine’s freedom and its citizens’ democratic way of life.”