In a rare diplomatic gesture, the Philippines President Rodrigo Duterte gave Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe a tour of his down-to-earth lifestyle, in Davao city, where the former served at mayor for two decades.

The Japanese PM was served bean soup and rice cakes at Duterte's two-storey bungalow, where the tough-talking leader showed Abe some of his family photos and the mosquito net that he uses while he sleeps.

On Friday (13 January), before leaving for Australia, Abe visited Duterte's home where the two leaders had breakfast. The Japanese PM's visit is aimed at enhancing ties between the two nations.

Duterte's top aide, Christopher Bong Go shared photos of the two leaders on Facebook and said, "We also showed him [Abe] how the President enjoys the comfort of his own bed, including his old and favorite mosquito net."

Duterte's way of life is something that urged millions of Filipino voters to elect him over wealthy politicians in the presidential polls held in May 2016.

Meanwhile, during his two-day visit to the country, Abe said that he welcomed Duterte's efforts in strengthening ties with China after winning an arbitration ruling on claims in the South China Sea.

However, he said that "the issue of the South China Sea is linked directly to regional peace and stability and is a concern to the entire international community".

Further, to boost economic ties, Philippines will receive $8.7bn (£7.1bn) worth of business opportunities and private investments from Japan, along with speedboats and other counter-terrorism equipment, according to the Associated Press.

Experts noted that while the West was finding it difficult to deal with the Filipino leader, Abe's visit could change their view towards Manila. Abe is the first head of state to visit Duterte in the Philippines.

The Japanese PM also attended some local ceremonies, while his wife Akie visited the Mintal Cemetery, where Japanese pre-war settlers are buried.

Shinzo Abe Philippines visit
Japan's Prime Minister Shinzo Abe waves to a crowd as he walks with Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte after a local ceremony at the garden area of the Waterfront Insular Hotel in Davao City on 13 January 2017 Malacanang Photo/Handout via Reuters