MANILA, Feb. 22 (Xinhua) -- Philippine officials lauded China on Tuesday for the tremendous success of the Beijing 2022 Winter Olympics, describing the sports event as an "incredible feat" that united athletes from all corners of the world.
"It is a shining moment in the country's history and the whole world," Philippine Foreign Secretary Teodoro Locsin said in a brief message to an online forum on the 2022 Olympics.
Locsin congratulated China and the Beijing 2022 organizing committee, adding the Olympic Games is "a unique opportunity for countries to bring together athletes from all over the world in friendly competition."
In this third year of the COVID-19 pandemic, Locsin said the Olympics is "a symbol of hope and the harbinger of the future where we can all gather and compete but to everyone's gain and no one's loss because just daring to compete to the best is victory in a fashion."
Locsin thanked China for hosting the Olympics amid the pandemic threat. "For daring to do so in the season of the pandemic full throttle. We thank China from the bottom of our hearts," he added.
The Philippines, which sent Alpine skier Asa Miller to compete in the Olympics, is one of the four tropical Southeast Asian countries that participated in the Olympics.
"I salute all the athletes that participated despite the added challenges of the pandemic. I am particularly proud of Miller, who represented the Philippines. We have no snow and no winter, but we were at the Beijing Olympics," Locsin said.
Trade Secretary Ramon Lopez said the Beijing 2022 Winter Olympics is now tagged as the most-watched Winter Olympics ever despite the COVID-related restrictions thanks to the various digital platforms, and "is a fitting celebration of sportsmanship, kinship, and solidarity as we collectively recover from the pandemic and begin a new chapter in the new normal."
"We salute China for their successful hosting, overcoming many obstacles from the pandemic, and for promoting winter sports to hot weather countries like ours," Lopez said.
The chef de mission of the Philippine delegation for the Beijing Winter Olympics, Valeriano Floro, also congratulated China, saying the event was flawless.
China's Ambassador to the Philippines Huang Xilian congratulated Filipino Alpine skier Miller "for his spectacular presence" in the Olympics.
"Miller's Olympic journey not only connects the friendship between China and the Philippines at the Winter Olympics but will also kindle more Filipino youngsters' enthusiasm for ice and snow sports and inspire more Filipino athletes to stand on the stage of future Winter Olympics," he added.
Huang expressed hope that China and the Philippines "can continue the friendship jumpstarted by the Winter Olympics, extend the kindling fire of the Olympic spirit."
"[I] look forward to a shared future together so that the growth of our new partnership can be strengthened and generate more fruitful results for our peoples," Huang said. ■