Japan-Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia Relations
Japan-Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia Foreign Ministers’ Meeting
February 17, 2018
On February 17, commencing at 1 p.m. (local time; 9 p.m. Japan time) for approximately 20 minutes, Mr. Taro Kono, Minister for Foreign Affairs, who was visiting Munich to attend the Munich Security Conference, held a meeting with Mr. Nikola Dimitrov, Minister of Foreign Affairs of Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia. The overview of the meeting is as follows.
- At the beginning, Minister Kono noted that the bilateral relations between the two countries have been steadily developed including the opening of the Embassy of Japan last year and explained that he intends to promote exchanges in various fields towards the 25th anniversary of the establishment of diplomatic relations in 2019. Minister Kono also stated that he placed importance on activating high-level exchanges. In response, Minister Dimitrov expressed his respect to Japan and special gratitude for the technical cooperation from the Government of Japan.
- In addition, Minister Kono explained that Japan attaches importance to the peace and stability of the Western Balkan region and will pursue not only bilateral cooperation but also cooperation with the whole region under the “Western Balkans Cooperation Initiative,” and from that perspective he appreciated Macedonia’s efforts and progress towards resolving the name issue with Greece. In response, Minister Dimitrov explained the current situation on the name issue and the perspective of his country’s accession to the EU, and stated that he will promote the process by taking advantage of the increasing interest in the Western Balkan region. Minister Dimitrov also expected continued cooperation with Japan.
- The two ministers exchanged views on a variety of topics, including international affairs, such as the North Korea situation as well as cooperation on global governance and in the international arena such as the United Nations Security Council reform.