Manila and Moscow on Thursday both expressed willingness to revive their sister-city agreement to boost arts, tourism and other sectors.
“This is good for us, for the tourism, arts, culture, investment. I’ll be happy to sign and exchange things and we always welcome things that we can learn and duplicate as what we are trying to do nowadays,” Manila Mayor Francisco “Isko Moreno’ Domagoso” said during the visit of Ambassador of the Russian Federation to the Philippines Marat Pavlov at the Manila City Hall.
Domagoso said the only thing missing to formalize the revival of the sister-city agreement between the two are their signatures.
As a reply, Pavlov said Moscow could not wait to open its doors anew once the coronavirus disease 2019 (Covid-19) pandemic is over.
“It is true that Moscow can really share these many things to you, but due to the pandemic, I understand that we can’t open our museums, open our theaters to our citizens,” Pavlov said.
Domagoso said Manila would benefit from the sister-city agreement especially that the theater art of Moscow is very popular and that Manila’s theater artists may learn many things from them.
In the last years, he has led the revival of several areas in Manila with great cultural significance.
This includes the Metropolitan Theater situated at the heart of Manila that is undergoing restoration and rehabilitation.
“It’s being refurbished and renovated, and it’s going to be made available to the general public in the few months,” Domagoso said.
The last time that the sister-city agreement between the city of Manila and Moscow was signed was in 1997 or 24 years ago, said Charlie Dungo, Department of Tourism, Culture, and Arts of Manila director.