The Asia-Europe Meeting (ASEM)

October 16, 2014
photo1 (Photo: Cabinet Public Relations Office)
  1. On Thursday, October 16, from 17:15 to 19:15 (local time), Prime Minister Shinzo Abe attended the Second Plenary Session of the ASEM10held in Milan, entitled "Europe-Asia partnership in addressing global matters in an inter-connected world." During the session, there was an exchange of opinions on the response to global issues including the development agenda; disaster prevention; climate change; food, water, and energy security; the rights and empowerment of women and the disabled; and so on.
  2. At the opening, Prime Minister Abe first talked about Japan's response to the Ebola virus disease. Then, taking 2015 as a keyword, he explained: (1) the establishment of post-2015 development agenda and post-Hyogo Framework for Action; (2) the promotion of the creation of a society in which women shine; (3) national initiatives in the field of climate change. He said that the shared points of these three topics were empathy for people with placing them center, the upholding of commitments, and the translating them into actions, , and stated that Japan would make a further contribution to a broad range of global issues from the perspective of Japan's policy of "Proactive Contribution to Peace".

    Specifically, regarding the post-2015 development agenda, Prime Minister Abe called for the consideration to inclusiveness, sustainability, and resilience while placing a priority on the principle of human security. He further said that from that perspective, Japan would lead the way on universal health coverage and the mainstreaming of disaster prevention, including hosting the Third UN World Conference on Disaster Risk Reduction. In addition, regarding the promotion of the creation of a society in which women shine, the Prime Minister noted that in September, the "World Assembly for Women in Tokyo: WAW! Tokyo 2014" had been held in Tokyo, attracting the participation of top leaders active in fields related to women issues from 24 countries around the world. Prime Minister Abe appealed that Japan would exercise leadership for the empowerment of women throughout the world, including support for the international community. Lastly, regarding the response to climate change, the Prime Minister said that Japan would promote initiatives based around the three pillars of (a) support for developing countries; (b) technological innovation and distribution; and (c) contributions to international frameworks.
  3. During this session, the leaders of the Republic of Korea (ROK), Viet Nam, and Malta delivered speeches as lead speakers, followed by remarks from the representatives of each participating country and their heads of state, including Japan.

    There were many remarks made on climate change, including opinions that discussions should be deepened toward an agreement in the Conference of Parties (COP) in 2015. There were also lively discussion on disaster risk reduction, and many leaders stated that the Third UN World Conference on Disaster Risk Reduction to be held in Sendai in March would be extremely important. There were also statements on the need for international cooperation in disaster recovery, and the overcoming of vulnerabilities as a prior issue.

    Additionally, some pointed out the importance of collaboration in the fields of culture and education, as well as the importance of person-to-person exchanges. There were also opinions expressed on the promotion of mutual cultural understanding through tourism, inter-religious dialogue and so on. Furthermore, there were proposals on cooperation related to cyber-security and the construction of regional Broadband Corridor, in terms of collaboration in the digital field.

    In addition, opinions were also expressed on initiatives toward poverty reduction, responses to the Ebola virus disease, and the response to the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIL).

Back to The Asia-Europe Meeting (ASEM)