Japan-Spain Relations

February 16, 2019
Japan-Spain Foreign Ministers’ Meeting(Hands Shakes)
Japan-Spain Foreign Ministers’ Meeting(Talks)

 On February 16, commencing at 11:00 a.m. for approximately 50 minutes (local time; 7:00 p.m. on the same day, Japan time), Mr. Taro Kono, Minister for Foreign Affairs, held a Foreign Ministers’ Meeting with H.E. Mr. Josep Borrell Fontelles, Minister of Foreign Affairs, European Union and Cooperation of Spain, during his visit to Germany to attend the Munich Security Conference. The overview of the meeting is as follows.

1. Opening Remarks and Bilateral Relations

 In opening remarks, Minister Kono expressed Japan’s intention to strengthen cooperation with Spain in a wide range of areas, following the elevation of the relationship between the two countries to a Strategic Partnership, during the visit by Mr. Shinzo Abe, Prime Minister of Japan, to Spain in October 2018. In response, Minister Borrell stated that Japan is Spain’s top priority partner in Asia, and explained that Spain intends to hold discussions with Japan in a wide range of fields, including security, development, tourism and advanced technologies.

2. Cooperation in International Fora

 (1) The two Ministers affirmed that Japan and Spain will work together on various matters, including towards the G20 Osaka Summit in Japan and the ASEM Foreign Ministers’ Meeting in Spain.
 (2) The two Ministers also touched on the entry into force of the Japan-EU Economic Partnership Agreement (EPA) on February 1, and shared the view to promote free trade between Japan and the EU and to work together on a wide range of issues.

3. Regional Affairs

 (1) The two Ministers shared the view that the international community should be united in supporting the U.S.-North Korea process, towards the 2nd U.S.-North Korea Summit, scheduled to be held in the end of this month. Furthermore, they shared the view that the complete implementation of the relevant United Nations Security Council resolutions is essential and confirmed that Japan and Spain will closely cooperate on this issue.
 (2) The two Ministers also exchanged their views on cooperation in the Indo-Pacific, given that Japan and Spain are traditional maritime nations.
 (3) Furthermore, the two Ministers exchanged their views on other various regional affairs.

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