November 22, 2015
Photo: Cabinet Public Relations Office
Photo: Cabinet Public Relations Office
The 10th East Asia Summit (EAS) Meeting was held in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia from 11:40 to 14:15 on November 22, chaired by the Honorable Dato’ Sri Mohd Najib bin Tun Abdul Razak, Prime Minister of Malaysia. Prime Minister Shinzo Abe attended the meeting. The overview is as follows:

1 Countering Terrorism and Violent Extremism

Prime Minister Abe expressed his support for narratives countering violent extremism, by stating that Japan is willing to extensively support countries concerned based on the spirit of ''the Best Way is to Go in the Middle.'' He strongly condemned acts of terrorism which recently occurred in Paris, and stated that Japan will continue to closely collaborate with the international community in order to prevent terrorist attacks. Many Leaders also underscored the importance of countering terrorism and violent extremism and the necessity for countries to work with each other in combating this global menace.

2 Strengthening of the EAS

Prime Minister Abe stressed that the structure of the EAS should be further strengthened as the premier forum of the region, on the occasion of its 10th anniversary since its founding. He reiterated that Japan puts its emphasis on expanding the scope of the EAS in the political and security areas, and reinforcing the EAS institution. Almost all the Leaders expressed their support for reinforced institution of the EAS as well as expanding its scope on political and security areas. The Leaders  adopted the Kuala Lumpur Declaration on the 10th Anniversary of the EAS.

3 Regional Security Issues

(1) Proactive Contribution to Peace

In view of the security environment in the region which is becoming increasingly severe, Prime Minister Abe expressed his determination that Japan will make further contributions to the peace, stability and prosperity of the region and the international community in accordance with the policy of  ''Proactive Contribution to Peace'' based on the principle of international cooperation, walking hand in hand with countries which share fundamental values such as freedom, democracy, human rights and the rule of law. He also stated that ''Legislation for Peace and Security'' concretely puts such efforts into practice, and that he is willing to move forward security cooperation with other countries in areas such as UN Peace Keeping Operations (PKO).

(2) Maritime Cooperation

Prime Minister Abe noted that he will support in a seamless manner capacities of countries to defend their maritime areas, by combining measures such as Official Development Assistance (ODA), assistance for capacity building as well as cooperation on defense equipment and technology. In addition, he valued the convening of the 4th Expanded ASEAN Maritime Forum (EAMF), expressed his support for a proposal to include maritime cooperation as a priority area of EAS cooperation, and expected that discussions regarding maritime cooperation will be further deepened in the EAS. Many Leaders underlined the importance of discussing issues on maritime cooperation in the EAS. The Leaders adopted the EAS Statement on Enhancing Regional Maritime Cooperation.

4 Review of Cooperation in the EAS and Stability of Sustainable Economy

With regard to infrastructure investment and industrial human resource development, Prime Minister Abe stated that Japan will support the industrial human resource development of 40,000 youths in Asia in their efforts towards enhancing skills and acquiring knowledge, and will reduce the period necessary for procedures of the Japanese ODA Loans to approximately one and a half years at most. In addition, he referred to the Comprehensive Asia Development Plan (CADP) 2.0 formulated by Economic Research Institute for the ASEAN and East Asia (ERIA) as it explained the significance of ''Quality of  Infrastructure,'' and encouraged countries to make use of  ERIA. Furthermore, he mentioned that Japan is providing its support to ASEAN Coordinating Centre for Humanitarian Assistance on Disaster Management (AHA Centre) through projects such as introduction of ICT systems, and will continue its assistance on disaster risk reduction by mainly focusing on human resource development. He also outlined Japan's intention to contribute to raise awareness on disaster risk reduction globally through founding of the ''World Tsunami Awareness Day.''

Prime Minister Abe said that the new economic order created by the TPP will form the basis for making the rules of the Free Trade Area of the Asia-Pacific (FTAAP) and that it will be significant in becoming the global standard of the 21st century. He also stated his desire to work closely with other countries on the early completion of comprehensive, high-level negotiations concerning the Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership (RCEP) to promote regional trade and investment and to expand supply chains. In addition, he expressed his hope for a more transparent and fluid market for liquefied natural gas (LNG), including relaxation of destination clauses, as global demand for LNG is forecast to grow.

5 Regional and International issues

(1) South China Sea

Prime Minister Abe called for strict abidance with the ''Three Principles of the Rule of Law at Sea,'' based on a view that freedom of navigation and overflight at sea must be defended as a fundamental right. In addition, he stated that coastal states are required under international law, whether for military use or civilian use, to refrain from unilateral actions that would cause permanent physical change to marine environment in maritime areas pending final delimitation.

Furthermore, he expressed serious concerns over the on-going situation in the South China Sea, where unilateral actions, including large-scale and rapid land reclamation, building of outposts and their use for military purposes, which change the status quo and raise tensions. He urged other leaders to share the common view that such remarks as ''not intending to pursue militarization of outposts built in the South China Sea'' must be followed by concrete actions. In addition, he stressed that the international community opposes any actions that will change the status quo and raise tensions, let alone militarization and reiterated the importance of dialogue. He also underscored his support for the utilization of arbitration procedures by the Philippines as a means to settle maritime disputes in a peaceful manner. He showed his strong expectations for full and effective implementation of the Declaration on the Conduct of Parties in the South China Sea (DOC), and expeditious establishment of an effective Code of Conduct in the South China Sea (COC).

Almost all the Leaders mentioned the South China Sea issue in their statements by pointing out the importance of the freedom of navigation and overflight, unimpeded commerce, peaceful resolution of disputes in accordance with international law, including the United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea (UNCLOS), refraining from taking actions that will raise tensions, full and effective implementation of the DOC and expeditious establishment of the COC. In addition to that, some Leaders showed their opposition to land reclamation, building of outposts as well as their use for military purposes in the South China Sea, urged parties to exercise self-restraint, supported the arbitration procedure, and pointed out that a judgment by the court of arbitration is legally-binding to both parties.

(2) North Korea

Prime Minister Abe stated that Japan is consistent in its policy of pursuing a comprehensive resolution of outstanding issues of concern including the abductions, nuclear and missile issues, and pointed out that the nuclear and missile development by North Korea, which violates United Nations Security Council (UNSC) resolutions, is a grave threat to the region and the international community, and that it is important for North Korea to refrain from provocations and to abide by UNSC resolutions. Furthermore, he called on countries for their continued understanding and cooperation toward on the early resolution of the abductions issue.

Some Leaders pointed out the necessity of abiding by relevant UNSC resolutions and early resumption of the Six-Party Talks with regard to North Korea's nuclear issue.

(3) UNSC Reform

Prime Minister Abe pointed out the importance of reforming the UNSC in a way which reflects the realities of the international community of the 21st century. Furthermore, Prime Minister Abe mentioned that it was agreed by consensus at the UN General Assembly (UNGA) to start negotiations based on the text which was prepared during the previous UNGA session, and that Japan will cooperate with other countries towards this end.

(4) Climate Change

Prime Minister Abe stated that a framework to enhance ambitions for reducing greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions is essential, and that Japan would like to collaborate with all Leaders participating in the EAS for the goal of adopting a fair and effective international framework applicable to all parties under the United Nations Framework on Climate Change (UNFCCC) at the Twenty-First Conference of the Parties (COP 21). He also mentioned that Japan will continue to provide support for developing countries in the area of climate change, and promote development and outreach of low carbon emission technology. Many Leaders stated that we must achieve some success at COP 21, and pointed out the numerous disaster and health issues generated by climate change.

In the meeting, in addition to the Kuala Lumpur Declaration on the 10th Anniversary of the EAS and the EAS Statement on Enhancing Regional Maritime Cooperation mentioned above, the EAS Declaration on the Global Movement of Moderates, the EAS Declaration on Countering Violent Extremism, the EAS Statement on Issues Related to Security of and in the Use of Information and Communications Technologies and the EAS Statement on Enhancing Regional Health Security relating to Infectious Diseases with Epidemic and Pandemic Potential were adopted.

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