Japan-Russia Relations

June 29, 2019
(Photo1) Japan-Russia Summit Meeting 1 Japan-Russia Summit Meeting
(Photo: Cabinet Public Relations Office)
(Photo2) Japan-Russia Summit Meeting 2 Japan-Russia Summit Meeting
(Photo: Cabinet Public Relations Office)
On June 29, Mr. Shinzo Abe, Prime Minister of Japan, with H.E. Mr. Vladimir Vladimirovich Putin, President of the Russian Federation, held his 26th Japan-Russia Summit Meeting on the occasion of the G20 Osaka Summit. The overview of the meeting is as follows (a one-on-one meeting for approximately 30 minutes, a small group meeting for approximately one hour, and an expanded meeting and working dinner for approximately one hour).

1. Peace treaty

  • The two leaders held candid discussions, including on the progress of the negotiations frequently conducted following the Summit Meeting in Singapore in November 2018 between the foreign ministers responsible for the negotiations and deputy foreign ministers handling the negotiations, and the future outlook.
  • The two leaders welcomed that the negotiations on a peace treaty were conducted energetically, under their determination to accelerate negotiations on the basis of the Japan-Soviet Joint Declaration of 1956, as announced by both sides in Singapore, and shared the view that they would continue to advance the negotiations.
  • Regarding the joint economic activities on the Four Northern Islands, the two leaders shared the view on the business model for “tourism” and “garbage disposal.” The two leaders shared the view that pilot projects would be implemented around this autumn as early as this autumn, such as pilot tours and reciprocal visits by Japanese and a Russian garbage disposal experts. Both leaders welcomed the deepening of discussion on framework for movement of people and legal issues for conducting the joint economic activities.  
  • Regarding humanitarian measures for former island residents, the two leaders shared the view on conducting this year’s grave visit by airplane in August or September. 

2. Economy

  • The two leaders welcomed progress in the realization of the Eight-point Cooperation Plan, including participation of Japanese companies in the Arctic LNG 2 project and decision to invest in the establishment of the Center of Preventive Medicine and Diagnostics in Khabarovsk. In addition, Japan called on Russia to lift its import restrictions on Japanese products following the Great East Japan Earthquake.

3. People-to-people exchanges

  • The two leaders welcomed that the Japan-Russia exchange year was  held successfully. They shared the view on holding the Japan-Russia year of regional exchanges from 2020 to 2021.
  • Prime Minister Abe announced that the Government of Japan has decided to introduce new visa relaxation measures from September 2019, namely: (1) issuance of multiple entry visas of up to five years to full-time employees of Russian companies, research institutes, and other entities involved in the Eight-point Cooperation Plan; and (2) simplification of visa application procedures for university students and others in Russia. 

4. Security

  • The two leaders welcomed the deepening of working-level security cooperation, including the various exchanges between the defense authorities, such as the Japan-Russia Foreign and Defense Ministerial Consultation (“2+2” Ministerial Meeting) held at the end of May, and between the coast guards, as well as responses to non-traditional threats, such as drugs, cybercrime, and money laundering. 

5. International situations

  • Regarding the North Korea situation, bearing in mind recent affairs, the two leaders held candid discussions toward the denuclearization of the Korean Peninsula, which is a common goal of Japan and Russia, and confirmed that they will continue to coordinate closely.
  • In light of rising tensions in the Middle East, the two leaders exchanged views while also taking into account Prime Minister Abe’s recent visit to Iran.
(Photo3) Japan-Russia joint press announcement 1 Japan-Russia joint press announcement
(Photo: Cabinet Public Relations Office)
(Photo4) Japan-Russia joint press announcement 2 Japan-Russia joint press announcement
(Photo: Cabinet Public Relations Office)

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