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Immediate Release

FACT SHEET: U.S.- Philippines 2+2 Ministerial Dialogue

Secretary of Defense Austin and Secretary of State Blinken and their Philippine counterparts Secretary of Foreign Affairs Manalo and Secretary of National Defense Galvez convened the third U.S.-Philippines Ministerial Dialogue in Washington, D.C., on April 11, 2023.  

The Secretaries put forth a shared vision for the Indo-Pacific region that supports the international rules-based order and addresses evolving regional and global security challenges – underscoring the importance of the U.S.-Philippines alliance for realizing this vision.  During the 2+2 Dialogue, Secretary Austin and Secretary Galvez advanced several defense initiatives that will ensure the alliance is postured to advance a free and open Indo-Pacific region. 


The United States and the Philippines are making significant strides to modernize alliance cooperation in an increasingly complex Indo-Pacific security environment by: 

  • Expanding the Enhanced Defense Cooperation Agreement (EDCA) to include four new EDCA sites in Palawan and Northern Luzon. The allies will increase infrastructure investments at new and existing EDCA sites to further support combined training, exercises, and interoperability between the U.S. and Philippine Armed Forces, as well as the Philippines’ civilian-led disaster preparedness and response capacities.  
    • The U.S. Department of Defense plans to allocate over $100 million by the end of Fiscal Year 2023 toward infrastructure investments at the new and existing EDCA sites.
    • The United States will also complement combined military training and exercises and EDCA-related projects with community-based activities led by the United States Agency for International Development (USAID), including humanitarian assistance and disaster relief capacity-building, access to safe water supplies, education, healthcare, sustainable fisheries management, biodiversity conservation, and energy security.
  • Fast-tracking ongoing discussions on new U.S.-Philippines Bilateral Defense Guidelines which will chart our vision for alliance cooperation across all operational domains and support bilateral coordination to respond to a range of crises and scenarios.  The Secretaries also committed to expanding the scope, scale, and complexity of combined training, exercises, and other activities.
  • Reaffirming that the 1951 Mutual Defense Treaty extends to U.S. and Philippine armed forces, aircraft, and public vessels, including those of their respective Coast Guards, anywhere in the South China Sea. The Secretaries underscored their ironclad mutual defense commitments amid the evolving regional security environment. 


The United States and the Philippines will deepen consultations on a range of regional security issues of shared interest and enhance operational cooperation, particularly in the maritime domain through:  

  • Finalizing plans for the resumption of combined maritime activities, including the conduct of joint sails by the U.S. and Philippine Navies, in the South China Sea. Both sides also discussed plans to conduct multilateral maritime activities with other like-minded partners in the South China Sea later this year.
  • Committing to expeditiously conclude bilateral Maritime Security Framework Implementing Guidelines, which will enable enhanced combined and rotational maritime cooperation and capacity-building activities in the South China Sea and across the Indo-Pacific. 
  • Expanding information-sharing on key challenges confronting the U.S.-Philippine alliance, including through the Indo-Pacific Partnership for Maritime Domain Awareness initiative and the conclusion of a bilateral General Security of Military Information Agreement (GSOMIA) before the end of the year, with the goal of enabling real-time information-sharing and technology cooperation across domains.


The United States and the Philippines will continue to prioritize the modernization of shared defense capabilities through a range of mechanisms, such as U.S. Foreign Military Financing and Excess Defense Articles as well as: 

  • Committing to adopt expeditiously a Security Sector Assistance Roadmap, which will guide shared defense modernization investments and the delivery over the next five to 10 years of priority defense platforms, as well as institutional capacity-building to enhance the Philippines’ multi-domain deterrence.
  • Holding focused discussions on an acquisition plan for a fleet of multi-role fighter aircraft for the Philippine Air Force and leveraging the additional $100 million in Foreign Military Financing that the United States announced last fall to support the acquisition of medium-lift helicopters.