China and the Philippines have agreed to resolve their territorial disputes in the South China Sea through friendly consultations.

Beijing and Manila on Wednesday vowed to resolve maritime disagreements through consultation, during a visit by Philippine President Ferdinand Marcos to the Chinese capital amid heightened tensions over the hotly disputed South China Sea.

The countries have both been rocked by economic crises linked to the COVID-19 pandemic, but are looking to recharge investments in bridges and other projects, along with tourism and agriculture.

Marcos and his Chinese counterpart Xi Jinping both called for "friendly consultation to appropriately resolve maritime issues," at a meeting on Wednesday, China's state-owned broadcaster CCTV said.

Marcos has insisted he will not let China trample on the Philippines' maritime rights in the area, and said before arriving in Beijing that he hoped to address "political security issues of a bilateral and regional nature".

Xi on Wednesday told Marcos that China wished to "contribute more positive energy to regional peace and stability" and "promote cooperation on oil and gas development in non-disputed areas. 219