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The High Representative/Vice-President Federica Mogherini concluded today her three day visit to Tokyo, where on 22 October she represented the European Union at the enthronement ceremony of His Majesty the Emperor Naruhito, alongside representatives of over 190 countries and international organisations. The High Representative on the occasion of this visit also met with the Minister for Foreign Affairs, Toshimitsu Motegi, and the Minister of Defence, Taro Kono.
Her meetings provided an opportunity to revisit some of the landmark achievements that have marked the past five years of EU-Japan relations. Signed at the 2018 EU-Japan Summit, the Strategic Partnership Agreement, provisionally applied since February 2019, and the Economic Partnership Agreement, in force since February 2019, are landmark deals that have provided a solid basis to develop our close cooperation, promote our shared interests, and bring tangible benefits to people’s lives through increased trade and investment.
With Ministers Motegi and Kono, the High Representative discussed areas on which the EU and Japan have agreed to cooperate more closely, notably connectivity as well as security and defence matters. The Partnership on Sustainable Connectivity and Quality Infrastructure, which Prime Minister Abe and President Juncker signed in Brussels on 27 September, paves the way for close cooperation bilaterally, multilaterally and in third countries on transport, energy, digital and people-to-people contacts. The EU is also committed to strengthening its security cooperation in and with Asia, and in this context is ready to develop a security and defence cooperation partnership with Japan, including on cyber and maritime security and crisis management. The High Representative also exchanged views with both Ministers on regional and international issues, including the Korean Peninsula, the South China Sea, the Gulf region and Afghanistan.
High Representative Mogherini also met with Fumio Kishida, member of the Diet and former Minister for Foreign Affairs. She thanked him for his support in preparing the Strategic Partnership Agreement and the Economic Partnership Agreement during his mandate as Foreign Minister.
The High Representative also met with Japanese academics and representatives of think tanks and civil society. She emphasised that shared interests and the convergence of views of the EU and Japan on many issues of global relevance, from free trade to democracy, human rights, and from nuclear non-proliferation to effective multilateralism, will continue to provide the bedrock of the EU-Japan partnership and friendship.