Japan-United States of America Relations
Japan-U.S. Summit Meeting
April 18, 2018
On April 17 and 18, Mr. Shinzo Abe, Prime Minister of Japan, visited Florida (US), and held three summit meetings with the Honorable Donald J. Trump, President of the United States of America. (First meeting: On the 17th commencing at 15:00 lasting approximately 55 minutes, tête-à-tête style (only accompanied by interpreters), Second meeting: On the 17th commencing at 15:55 lasting approximately 70 minutes, small meeting; Third meeting: On the 18th commencing at 14:50 lasting approximately 110minutes, working lunch.).
1 North Korea
- The two leaders reaffirmed the close coordination between the two countries with respect to the actions to be taken on the issue of North Korea including the upcoming US-North Korea Summit Meeting, and expressed their intention for Japan and the US to remain fully aligned on all areas of talks with North Korea. They also confirmed the importance of Japan-US-ROK close trilateral coordination.
- Both leaders shared the recognition that maximum pressure campaign to North Korea under the close cooperation among Japan, the US, and ROK and in coordination with the international community including China, has recently driven North Korea to seek dialogue. The two leaders also commended the efforts by the ROK Government up to this point.
- The two leaders noted that concrete measures toward denuclearization hadn't been announced yet by North Korea, and shared the view that they needed to continue careful analysis of its intention.
- Nonetheless, both leaders affirmed that they would maintain maximum pressure against North Korea. As the US maintains the policy of "all options are on the table", Prime Minister Abe reaffirmed his support for this President Trump's principled position. Moreover, both leaders shared the recognition that North Korea must not be given any reward for merely engaging with other countries, and that the international community should uphold this policy.
- Both leaders reaffirmed that they are committed to achieving the denuclearization of North Korea. They also reaffirmed that North Korea needs to abandon all weapons of mass destruction and ballistic missile programs in a complete, verifiable and irreversible manner. The two leaders shared the recognition that specific actions need to be taken by North Korea to realize these goals.
- Prime Minister Abe requested President Trump to raise the abductions issue during the upcoming US-North Korea Summit Meeting, and President Trump assured that he will bring up the matter in his meeting with Kim Jong-un and urge North Korea to promptly resolve its abduction of Japanese citizens, referring to the strong impression he received when he met the families of the abductees during his visit to Japan last November. Both leaders agreed to work towards the early resolution of the abductions issue.
- Both leaders shared the importance of addressing North Korea's sanctions evasion and full implementation of the pertinent United Nations Security Council Resolutions by the international community under close cooperation with international partners including ROK. In this context, President Trump commended Japan's effort to counter illegal ship-to-ship transfers of goods by North Korea related vessels, and expressed that the US, with other multilateral partners, would continue efforts on this issue in coordination with Japan.
- Both leaders shared the expectation that the situation will improve following the US-North Korea Summit Meeting, etc. They also shared the recognition that North Korea is situated in a truly fortunate location, adjoining the growth region of Asia and the Pacific, and it has an industrious labor force as well as natural resources. Both leaders also shared the view that if it were to make use of those, there could be a path towards North Korea dramatically growing its economy and improving public welfare, and reaffirmed that is where North Korea's bright future lies.
Photo: Cabinet Public Relations Office
Photo: Cabinet Public Relations Office
- The two leaders affirmed the necessity to safeguard free and fair trade in the Indo-Pacific region.
- Prime Minister Abe explained to President Trump about investments by Japanese companies to the United States and how such investments contributed to job creation in the United States and expansion of U.S. exports, as well as about the increase in purchases of U.S. energy by Japanese companies, among other matters.
- The two leaders also decided to launch new talks for free, fair, and reciprocal trade deals chaired by Mr. Toshimitsu Motegi, Minister in charge of Economic Revitalization and Ambassador Robert Lighthizer, United States Trade Representative, with a view to further expanding trade and investment between Japan and the U.S. and realize economic development in a free and open Indo-Pacific region based on fair rules so as to benefit both countries, and to report the discussions to the Japan-U.S. Economic Dialogue under Deputy Prime Minister Taro Aso and Vice President Mike Pence.
3 Japan-U.S. Alliance
- Against the backdrop of the current situation regarding North Korea, President Trump reaffirmed unwavering commitment of the US to Japan's defense through the full range of US military capabilities, both nuclear and conventional.
- Both leaders reaffirmed that they would further promote the Japan-US security cooperation through steady implementation of Japan's Legislation for Peace and Security and the Guidelines for Japan-U.S. Defense Cooperation.
- Both leaders expressed their intention to work together to mitigate impact of the U.S. forces on local communities, including Okinawa, while maintaining operational and deterrent capability of the U.S. forces, Japan. The leaders reconfirmed that the relocation of Marine Corps Air Station (MCAS) Futenma to the Camp Schwab/Henoko area and in adjacent waters is the only solution that avoids the continued use of Marine Corps Air Station Futenma and as such called for the steady implementation of the construction plan for the Futenma Replacement Facility (FRF) to ensure the Alliance's ability to provide for peace and security in the region. Both leaders also shared a continued commitment to safety operations.
- The two leaders shared concern regarding the situation in the East and South China Seas, and reaffirmed that Japan and the US would continue to coordinate together on this issue. The two leaders also reaffirmed that Article V of the U.S.-Japan Treaty of Mutual Cooperation and Security covers the Senkaku Islands in the East China Sea and that they oppose any unilateral action that seeks to change the status quo.
- Prime Minister Abe conveyed President Trump that it is important for Japan to continue introducing sophisticated equipment including U.S.-made defense equipment in strengthening Japan's defense capability and responding to the severe security environment. President Trump welcomed Prime Minister Abe's remarks.
- The two leaders welcomed the progress in consultation between both countries toward the realization of a free and open Indo-Pacific, and shared the view that they would further advance concrete cooperation in areas including quality infrastructure development that are in accordance with international standards.
- The two leaders also discussed China, and shared the importance to continue to urge China's further contribution to regional and international peace, security and prosperity.