Section 6. Promotion of Understanding with Various Foreign Countries


1. Asia and the Pacific Area


(1) Asian in general

The situation in Asia shifted substantially from "confrontation to dialogue" in 1971 through 1972. In 1973, the atmosphere of dialogue was promoted further, including the concluding of the Vietnam cease-fire agreement and of the protocol on the implementation of the Laos peace agreement.

However, peace in Indochina did not become as secure as had been expected, and relations among the major powers concerning Asia are still fluid. In addition, there are many unstable factors still existing in various parts of Asia. While paying attention to the situation within and outside Asia, Japan has endeavored to promote positive relations with the Asian countries and other countries of the world that have an influence on Asia, including those whose systems differ from its own, desiring that peace and stability will become firmly established in that area. (For instance, it established diplomatic relations with the Democratic Republic of Vietnam in September 1973.) Since many of the Asian countries are still under-going development and their weak economic and social foundations are potential sources of instability, Japan has tried to improve its economic cooperation qualitatively and quantitatively in order to make indirect contributions toward their nation-building within the framework of their national pride and sense of independence.

On the other hand, criticisms of Japan have increased in parts of Asia over the rapid increase of Japan's enormous economic presence, the way Japanese corporations conduct business and the behavior of Japanese residents in those countries. Al-though various complex factors and backgrounds, including differences in national character and problems of internal politics in host countries, are entangled in this problem, Japan must humbly listen to all reasonable criticisms and correct its attitude where it should, In so doing, Japan needs to cope with such criticisms patiently and calmly by taking the nature of the problem into consideration and cooperating with the governments of the host countries.


(2) Korea

Relations between Japan and the Republic of Korea have, as a whole, developed smoothly since the normalization of relations in 1965, For instance, Japan's two-way trade with that country increased from about $220 million in 1965 to about$3,000 million in 1973 (the Republic of Korea is Japan's fifth largest trading partner), and Japanese investments there have sharply increased in recent years. This kind of economic exchange on a private basis contributes to the economic development of both countries. Besides, Japan has provided the Republic of Korea with economic aid on a government basis in order to assist in the well-balanced development of its economy and improve the welfare of its people, and this aid has achieved considerable results.

In addition to exchange in the economic field, the two countries have promoted mutual understanding and friendly and good neighborly relations through the exchange of opinions at the government level, in such forums as regular ministerial conferences, trade conferences and the joint committee on fisheries, and also through exchanges in sports, science and other areas at the private level.

This does not mean, however, that such close relations between Japan and the Republic of Korea have been without problems, In August 1973, Mr. Kim Dae Jung, a former candidate for the presidency of the Republic of Korea, was abducted from Japan, arousing great concern among the Japanese people. The Government tried to settle this case in a way acceptable to all at home and abroad and handled it by taking the standpoint that it attaches importance to Mr. Kim's human rights, and the case as a diplomatic problem came to an end in November. It should be noted that the direction that Japan-Republic of Korea relations should take was discussed from various angles with this case as a turning point. Although some of the views expressed lacked a proper understanding of the facts, it did appear that mutual understanding between the two nations was not necessarily adequate and the important need to deepen their mutual understanding in the future was confirmed on the occasion of the Japan-Republic of Korea ministerial conference in December.

Japan has no diplomatic relations with North Korea and it does not intend to open diplomatic relations with that country at present. A rapid shift in Japan's policy toward North Korea will exert considerable influence on the delicate relations between North and South Korea, and Japan needs to watch the international situation carefully as to how North-South relations develop in the future and also whether socialist countries will enter into exchanges with the Republic of Korea. However, Japan's exchange with North Korea in the cultural, sports and economic fields has increased considerably in recent years (Japan's two-way trade with North Korea in 1973 was about$170 million), and Japan intends to expand these kinds of interchange.


(3) China

(A) Improvement of the Basis of Diplomacy

In unfolding its new diplomacy toward China following the normalization of Japan-China relations in September 1972,Japan began by opening diplomatic channels between the two countries. In accordance with Paragraph 4 of the Japan-China joint statement which provided for the establishment of embassies in each other's capital and the exchange of ambassadors as early as possible, Japan opened its embassy in Peking on January 11 and dispatched Ambassador Heishiro Ogawa to the Peking embassy late in March.

Japan endeavored to reinforce the functions of the embassy, and the number of its staff members as of December 1973exceeded 30.

(B) Promotion of the Conclusion of Various Working Agreements

Since the normalization of bilateral relations, Japan has done its best to promote the exchange of personnel and goods and to conclude working agreements on trade, shipping, civil aviation, fisheries, etc., which form the basis for various kinds of working relations between Japan and China. As the initial move, Foreign Minister Ohira and Foreign Minister Chi of China signed a trade agreement in Peking on January 5, 1974.This paved the way for conducting trade between Japan and China on a long-term and stable basis.

As for a bilateral civil aviation agreement, Japanese Government delegations visited China twice-in March and April-and conducted preliminary negotiations. Later, talks on the question were held with the Chinese Government through the Japanese Embassy in Peking. On the occasion of his visit to China in January 1974, Foreign Minister Ohira discussed with Chinese leaders additional matters related to a civil aviation agreement.

As for shipping, Japan and China exchanged gists of a shipping agreement draft. As regards the conclusion of a fisheries agreement, a meeting of Japanese and Chinese fishery experts was held in Peking late in June, and the participants held talks preliminary to negotiations toward an agreement on

such matters as fishery resources in the East China Sea and the Yellow Sea.

(C) Promotion of Various Forms of Exchange

Japan has positively promoted the exchange of personnel and goods, both official and private, in many fields and has held various exhibitions from the view that the promotion of mutual understanding is indispensable for the promotion of friendly relations between Japan and China. It intends to promote exchange between the two countries as extensively as possible in order to develop Japan-China relations further through the deepening of mutual understanding.


(4) Indochina

The following events merit special mention among Japan's diplomatic activities with respect to Indochina in 1973.

(A) Establishment of Diplomatic Relations with North Vietnam

Japan established diplomatic relations with the Democratic Republic of Vietnam (North Vietnam) on September 21,1973. It expects that the promotion of bilateral relations with that country will contribute to the peace and stability of Indo-china and considers that it is desirable to establish embassies in each other's capital, However, Japan was still unable to open its embassy in North Vietnam as of the end of March 1974 because no reply had been received from the North Vietnam Government concerning the acceptance of Japanese embassy staff members, although Japan had completed the necessary domestic measures in this connection. (The Japanese Embassy in Laos is handling matters related to North Vietnam.)

(B) Emergency Aid for Indochina

Japan had expressed at home and abroad its intention of offering suitable aid for the postwar reconstruction and development of Indochina upon the restoration of peace there. Following the conclusion of the Vietnam peace agreement on January 27, 1973, and the Laos peace agreement on February 21, 1973, Japan set aside \10,800 million as emergency grant assistance for Indochina in the supplementary budget for fiscal 1973(which was approved on December 14, 1973) and decided to carry out the plan. Late in March 1974, it concluded agreements to provide South Vietnam with \5,000 million and Laos with \800 million in emergency grant assistance. (In addition, Japan supplied aid in commodities worth about \8,200 million to the Republic of Vietnam late in March 1974,)

(C) Humanitarian Aid through the International Red Cross

Japan made cash contributions of \500 million each in March and October 1973 toward the Indochina Operational Group (IOG) of the International Red Cross, whose object is to effectively carry out relief measures for the refugees and other victims of the war in Indochina. The IOG is engaged in relief activities for all of Indochina from a humanitarian point. of view.


(5) Indian Subcontinent

Relations between Japan and the countries in the Indian subcontinent have developed smoothly on the basis of progress in their economic relations and also in economic and technical cooperation.

Japan has been extending cooperation as much as possible to that area, hoping to help promote stability and development. Although relations among the countries of Southwest Asia are complicated, centering on the confrontation between India and Pakistan, Japan desires to maintain and promote friendly relations with all countries in that area.

Thus, from the standpoint mentioned above, Japan made the following diplomatic efforts in 1973 to promote friendship and goodwill with the countries of Southwest Asia:

(A) In its relations with India, Japan invited Foreign Minister Swaran Singh as a Government guest in January and discussed ways to promote Japan-India relations. In May, the two countries held their eighth regular consultation at the working level in Tokyo. Japan promised to offer India about \7,000 million in aid in commodities and about \11,000 million in aid in projects in fiscal 1973, and also agreed to defer there payment of yen credits (official development loan) totaling about \15,000 million.

(B) As for relations between Japan and Pakistan, the two countries held their third consultative meeting at the administrative level in Islamabad in November 1973. Japan donated to Pakistan, through the Japanese Red Cross Society, relief goods worth \100 million in aid for victims of floods in Pakistan in August. In December, Japan agreed to defer the repayment of yen credits (official development loan) totaling about \6,400 million, and opened consultations on its 11th yen credit to Pakistan.

(C) In its relations with Bangladesh, Japan invited Prime Minister Sheikh Mujibur Rahman to Japan as a Government, guest in October and discussed with him ways to promote relations between the two countries, In January 1974, Japan sent a Government economic mission led by Shigeo Nagano, president of the Japan Chamber of Commerce and Industry, to Bangladesh. In fiscal 1973, Japan exported to Bangladesh 90,000 tons of rice (worth about \5,200 million) on a deferred payment basis and promised to give a Y9,000 million yen credit (commodity loan) on the most concessionary terms ever granted by Japan.

(D) Japan welcomed the conclusion in August 1973 of the Delhi agreement between India and Pakistan on the mutual repatriation of prisoners of war, etc., (Bangladesh also agreed), and contributed US$1  million to the U.N. High Commissioner for Refugees to help the mutual repatriation of Pakistani and Bangladesh refugees under the agreement.

(E) In its relations with Sri Lanka, Japan promised its eighth yen credit (official development loan) totaling \3,500 million and made a grant of 95 million in KR food aid and for the purchase of a training fishing boat.


(6) Oceania

Oceania consists of advanced countries (Australia and New Zealand) and developing island countries (Fiji, West Samoa, Tonga and Nauru). Japan has been trying to promote broad relations of friendship and cooperation with that area because it occupies, as part of Asia and the Pacific area, an important position with respect to Japan in economic, political and other fields.

For Australia and New Zealand, 1973 was the first year under their labor governments, and their relations with Japan were further strengthened partly because these two countries positively carried out measures that attached importance to Asia.

In May, Their Imperial Highnesses the Crown Prince and Crown Princess visited Australia and New Zealand, thereby promoting Japan's relations of friendship and goodwill with these countries. In October, Prime Minister E. Gough Whitlam of Australia visited Japan as a Government guest and held talks with leaders here. The two countries held their second ministerial committee meeting in Tokyo with the participation of four Australian Cabinet ministers who accompanied Prime Minister Whitlarn. As a result of the talks between Prime Minister Whitlam and Prime Minister Tanaka, the two countries agreed to open negotiations for the conclusion of a comprehensive treaty to establish basic principles governing their bilateral relations.

In 1973, Japan accredited its ambassador in New Zealand as ambassador to West Samoa and 'Tonga (concurrently serving as ambassador to New Zealand), thereby completing the establishment of its embassies (including concurrent embassies) in all the independent countries in Oceania, including the four island nations.

In Oceania, the future moves of Papua New Guinea, which achieved self-government under Australian administration on December 1, 1973, deserve attention. It is expected that Papua New Guinea will become independent even as early as Decernber1974, and its Government has hopes for economic cooperation with Japan and for strengthening bilateral relations. Japan has been trying to promote relations of friendship and cooperation with this area, and invited First Minister Michael Thomas Somare to Japan in February 1973.


2. Middle East and Africa


The fourth Middle East war in October 1973 created major concern in the world, and it produced various effects on Japan's relations with the countries in this area. It can be said that the fourth Middle East war stemmed from the fact that the dispute in the area since the end of the third Middle East war in 1967 had not been settled despite various peacemaking attempts over a six-year period, including the adoption of the U.N. Security Council Resolution 242, mediatory efforts made by special representative Jarring, conferences of the foreign ministers of the four major powers and the Rogers proposal.

Following the third Middle East war in 1967, Japan exerted itself as chairman of the U.N. Security Council in October of that year to have Security Council Resolution 242 adopted. From 1971 onward, Japan has earnestly sought a fair, permanent and prompt settlement of the Middle East dispute and in advance of the Western countries has positively supported in the U.N. General Assembly each year resolutions calling for recognizing the equality and the right of self-government for the Palestinians. When the fourth Middle East war broke out, Japan expressed its hope, in a series of Government statements, for an end to the war as soon as possible and made clear at home and abroad the position of the Japanese Government on the dispute. In particular, the Chief Cabinet Secretary's statement of November 22 made the following four points clear as principles to be observed for a settlement of the Middle East war, including Japan's interpretation of Security Council Resolution 242, in view of the fact that a lack of consistency among the nations in interpretation of the Resolution had been an obstacle to the enforcement of the Resolution in its entirety:

(i) The acquisition and occupation of territories by force of arms should not be tolerated.

(ii) The withdrawal of Israeli forces from all the territories occupied in the 1967 war.

(iii) The territorial integrity and security of all countries in that area must be respected and measures should be taken to assure that these conditions are met,

(iv) In bringing about a fair and lasting peace in the Middle East, the Palestinians' legitimate rights under the U.N. Charter should be recognized and respected. 

Japan thus reconfirmed its attitude toward the Middle East dispute and sent Deputy Prime Minister Takeo Miki as special Government envoy in December and former Foreign Minister Zentaro Kosaka as ambassador extraordinary in January through February 1974 to a total of 16 countries in the Near. and Middle East, The two special envoys were dispatched to explain Japan's position on the Middle East dispute to the leaders of the various countries and obtain their understanding, as well as to study thoroughly the situation in these countries, in order to seek ways to contribute to a settlement of the Middle East dispute and consolidate Japan's relations of friendship and, goodwill with them from a long-range point of view.

While doing its part as a member of the international community hoping for peace in the Middle East, Japan urged the United States, the Soviet Union and the United Nations, which were in a position to exert great influence on peace making in the Middle East, to make positive efforts for peace. Immediately after his return home from his tour of eight Middle East countries, special envoy Miki visited the United States and the United Nations and asked them once again for mediatory efforts for peace.

Mutual visits by highly placed persons from Japan and these countries became even more active around the time of the visits made by special envoys Miki and Kosaka. Syrian Foreign Minister Abdul Halim Khaddam and Director General of Abu Dhabi Executive Council Dr. Adnan Pachachi as representative of the Minister for Foreign Affairs of the United Arab Emirates visited Japan in December 1973 under a decision made at an Arab summit meeting, followed in January 1974by an OAPEC mission consisting of Algerian Industry and Energy Minister Belaid Abdessalam and Saudi Arabian Minister of Petroleum Shaikh Ahmad Zaki Yamani. In February, Deputy Prime Minister Dr. Mohammad Abdel-Kader Hatem of Egypt visited Japan. These visitors exchanged views with Japanese leaders. Along with such exchange of visits exchange in the cultural field and cooperation in the economic and technical fields also made steady progress.

Japan is scheduled to establish embassies in the United Arab Emirates and the Kingdom of Jordan in 1974 in addition to its 15 missions already existing in the Middle East region. In and after 1973, the embassies of Qatar, Morocco, Sudan, the United Arab Emirates and Jordan were established in Tokyo.

Diplomatic relations between the Middle East countries. and Japan are proceeding in the direction of being strengthened further as global attention is being increasingly focused on the Middle East area.

Turning to Africa (south of the Sahara Desert), we note the remarkably increased role being taken by African countries. in international society. Their activities at various international conferences and over resources and other problems in recent years have been spectacular, and the Japanese interest in Africa has greatly increased as a result. The expectations of the African countries toward Japan have also increased remarkably as its international stature has risen and its economic power increased. With this situation as the background, Japan has, further stepped up its diplomacy toward Africa, and its relations with the African countries have rapidly expanded as a whole.

One of the most important political problems in Africa is the so-called southern African problem over racial discrimination and colonialism, Concerning this problem, Japan has made clear its basic attitude of opposing all forms of racial discrimination and colonialism, and has expressed its stand in the United Nations and other forums and endeavored to take the necessary measures in accordance with the purport of various U.N. resolutions concerned.

Economic and social development is the greatest problem facing the African countries at present and is one of the problems that requires a prompt solution. Fully understanding this point, Japan has been trying to strengthen its economic cooperation with Africa. As a result, its economic cooperation with the African countries has increased much further. In 1973 and early in 1974, Japan made arrangements with the African countries to extend yen credits totaling about \60,000 million. It also extended emergency relief from a humanitarian point of view for the drought-stricken people of the Sahara and Ethiopia.

Trade with Africa has also sharply increased. It is widely realized that the economies of Japan and Africa are supplementary and interdependent, and it is expected that trade will continue to grow.

The most effective way to promote Japan's relations with the African countries is to expand and strengthen diplomatic channels, and to this end, Japan established its embassies in Liberia in January 1973 and in Central Africa in January 1974.Uganda established its embassy in Tokyo in December 1973.

Mutual understanding with the African countries through the exchange of personnel is also indispensable for strengthening Japan's relations with them, and African leaders visited Japan in rapid succession in 1973. Many cabinet ministers, such as Foreign Minister Didier Ratsiraka of Madagascar, Foreign Minister Nguza Karl I Bond of Zaire and Finance Minister Stephen Tolbert of Liberia visited Japan, in addition to Prime Minister Seewoosagur Ramgoolam of Mauritius. These visit contributed to deepening their understanding of this country.


3. The Americas


(1) The United States

(A) Japan-U.S. Relations in General

The basis of Japan's diplomacy is the maintenance of closer relations with the 'United States than with any other country in all fields including politics, the economy, culture and science.

There are no major problems pending between Japan and the United States since the settlement of such problems as the reversion of Okinawa and the trade imbalance between the two countries. Japan-U.S. relations have now developed into a mature state in which both countries try not only to cope with bilateral issues but also to seek their common tasks and roles concerning a wide range of international problems, such as energy and resources, the new round of the Multilateral Trade Negotiations, the international monetary system and assistance toward the developing countries, from the standpoint of "Japan-U.S. relations in a global perspective." The leaders of both countries confirmed on the occasion of the Prime Minister's visit to the United States in the summer of 1973 that their relations had entered a new stage of development.

Japan has been holding close consultations with the United States and Western Europe concerning Dr, Kissinger's concept calling for a declaration of the guiding principles for friendly relations among the industrialized democracies, such as Japan, the United States and Western Europe, for the next five or ten years, bearing in mind the future cooperation among Japan, the United States and the West European countries which share common value concepts, political ideals and social systems, and have common political and economic problems. 

There is an understanding between Japan and the United States that, in order to achieve their common goal of stabilizing the international order, they sometimes might choose different paths. It is against this background that the normalization of relations between Japan and China was realized in September 1972. On the Middle East dispute, Japan and the United States had the understanding, through talks on the occasion of Secretary of State Kissinger's visit to Japan in November 1973, that, while the two countries had the common objective of realizing peace in the Middle East at an early date, they might possibly take different approaches because their positions differed. It is important for Japan to further strengthen "Japan-U.S. relations in a global perspective" with the broadened and deepened dialogue between the two countries as the background.


(B) Outline of Japan-U.S. Economic Relations

(a) The first change in the basic trend in Japan-U.S. economic relations in 1973 was the great improvement in the trade imbalance between the two countries.

The trade imbalance in Japan-U.S. trade showed a great improvement in 1973, and the deficit of the United States de-creased from $4,100 million (U.S. Department of Commerce figures) in 1972 to $1,330 million in 1973. This means that the-trade imbalance improved by $2,770 million in 1973.

Although Japan registered a surplus of slightly more than $1,300 million in its trade with the United States in 1973, the discontent with and criticism of Japan in the United States gradually weakened, partly because the United States' global trade balance rapidly improved in 1973. (Its trade balance showed a deficit of $6,400 million in 1972, but registered a surplus of $680 million in 1973.)

(b) In the field of capital transactions, Japanese investments in the United States sharply increased in 1972 through the first half of 1973 for such reasons as (i) a sharp increase in Japan's foreign exchange reserves, (ii) the yen's increased purchasing power in buying assets in the United States as a result of the upward revaluation of the yen and its shift to the floating rate system and (iii) the reduced margin of wage differentials between the two countries due to the improved level of wages in Japan. The total amount of approved direct Japanese investments in the United States as of the end of 1973 was about $1,900 million compared with about $1,100 million as of the end of 1972. Investments in commerce and the insurance business had accounted for the greater part of all Japanese investments in the United States before, but investments in manufacturing industries also showed a tendency to increase in 1973.

(c) The biggest outstanding question in the first half of1973 was the emergence of moves in the United States to restrict exports of raw materials and foodstuffs against the background of global scarcities of these goods. (U.S. export restrictions on soybeans and other farm produce, and Japanese import restrictions on lumber and scrap iron from the United States imposed at the request of the U.S. Government.) As a result, how to secure stable supplies of these items became a major problem for Japan which depends on the United States for many important raw materials and foodstuffs. This problem was discussed in such forums as the Joint Japan-U.S. Committee on Trade and Economic Affairs, and both countries agreed to co-operate to assure stable supplies of these goods to Japan.

(d) In 1973, there was the awakening of a clear recognition in both Japan and the United States that it was necessary to view their bilateral economic relations in the light of their impact on the world economy. Their cooperative efforts made in connection with the start of the Multilateral Trade Negotiations and also discussions on international monetary system re-form are examples of such an awareness.

(e) The oil crisis arising from the fourth Middle East war is expected to affect the Japan-U.S. economic relationship in many ways, but the question of how and in what form was left over until 1974.


(2) Canada

(A) Japan-Canada 'Relations in General

Relations between Japan and Canada have become closer in recent years centering on the economic and trade fields, and their relations have been very friendly, In Canada, there has been a growing tendency to attach importance to the promotion of its relations with the Asia-Pacific region in carrying out a multipolarization of its diplomacy, and it is necessary for Japan and Canada to endeavor to broaden exchange beyond the limits of the economic and trade fields. 

Based on this recognition, Japan and Canada intend to seriously consider the possibility of expanding cooperation in many fields, and it is expected that substantial achievements will be made through such forums as meetings of the Japan-Canada Ministerial Committee.


(B) Outline of Japan-Canada Economic Relations

Economic relations between Japan and Canada in 1973 generally developed smoothly centering on trade, and the two-way exchange between them reached $3,000 million. Canada remained Japan's third largest trading partner, while Japan in 1973 replaced Britain as Canada's second largest trading partner after the United States as their bilateral trade expanded.

Efforts were continued actively throughout 1973 for closer exchange between Japan and Canada, and leaders of the provinces of Ontario Manitoba and Alberta visited Japan. In November, a Japanese administrative-level delegation visited Canada to discuss ways for scientific and technical cooperation between Japan and Canada, in the wake of a visit to Japan by a Canadian scientific and technical mission led by Minister of Science and Technology Alastair W. Gillespie in 1972.

Direct Japanese investments in manufacturing industries in Canada and Japanese tourists visiting Canada have increased in recent years, and it is expected that exchange between the two countries will be broadened and carried out more actively.


(3) Central and South America

Relations between Japan and the countries of Central and South America have developed smoothly centering on trade and economic relations, and these countries have come to show greater interest in and to place greater expectations on Japan with the growth of the Japanese economy in recent years. For instance, many Cabinet ministers and missions from the region, including Finance Minister Rodrigo Llorente of Colombia, a Mexican Congressional mission, Foreign Minister Mauricio Alfredo Borgonovo Pohl of El Salvador and Minister of Commerce and Industry Marcus Vinicius Pratini Moraes of Brazil, visited Japan and exchanged opinions with Japanese political and business leaders on many subjects centering on bilateral economic cooperation.

Political relations between Japan add the Central and South American countries have been very good. About 800,000Japanese citizens and descendents live there, and the importance of these countries to Japan continues to increase as stable sup-pliers of industrial raw materials, foodstuffs, etc., and as trading and investment partners. In 1973, many Japanese missions visited the region. The importance to Japan of Central and South America, which has many undeveloped resources, in-creased further in 1973 as the problem of resources and energy became more serious throughout the world, and Japan's participation in large-scale projects on a private basis aimed at the joint development of resources centering on Brazil materialized in rapid succession. Private Japanese investments in Central and South America have continued to increase sharply since1972, mainly in Brazil, Mexico and Peru, and their total amount as of 1973 was $1,600 million.

At the governmental level, Japan held regular consultations in 1973 aimed at exchanging opinions on various economic problems with Brazil and Mexico. There were diplomatic efforts such as negotiations with the Brazilian Government for the conclusion of a fisheries agreement to secure the right of Japanese fishing boats to operate in fishing grounds off Brazil from where they were shut out as a result of the enactment of a law on 200-nautical mile territorial waters. In the field of economic and technical cooperation, Japan extended a \4,300 million official development loan to Costa Rica in September 1973 for the construction of Caldera Port, and also extended through the Export-Import Bank of Japan a \400 million loan to the Central American Economic Integration Bank in the same year for the construction of a Central American microwave communications network, As for technical cooperation, Japan dispatched 120experts and accepted 311 foreign trainees, In connection with the Chilean Government's request to its creditor nations made in January 1973 for the relief of debts for reasons of its foreign exchange crisis, Japan participated in the Paris conference of creditor nations and agreed, together with other creditor nations to a second credit relief for Chile.

It is considered that Japan's relations with the Central and South American countries will become even closer with economic relations as the axis. It is necessary for Japan, whose relations with these countries tend to concentrate in the economic field centering on Brazil, Mexico and Peru where private Japanese investments are "concentrated, to broaden its relations with all Central and South American nations as much as possible. For example, the number of Japanese businesses operating in Brazil sharply increased during 1973 from about 100 to more than 800.It is hoped that the economic advance of private Japanese enterprises, such as business operations in these countries, will pay due consideration to their possible effects on the host countries and that Japan will further strengthen its economic and technical cooperation with these countries at the governmental level and further promote cultural exchange in line with the realities of the development of Central and South America.


4. Western Europe


(1) Present Condition and Problems of Japan-Europe Relations 

There was an active exchange of visits by government leaders at the top level between Japan and West European countries in 1973, including Prime Minister Tanaka's visit to France, Britain and the Federal Republic of Germany (September 26-October 7), Foreign Minister Ohira's visit to Europe (April 26-May 6) and Italian Prime Minister Giulio Andreotti's visit to Japan (April 23-27). In addition, concrete cooperation in many fields, including economic, scientific, technical and cultural ex-change, was promoted, and 1973 was an epochal year for Japan's diplomacy vis-a-vis Western Europe.

Various factors contributed to the development of close relations between Japan and the countries of Western Europe. First, the international importance of Japan and Europe in the political field became recognized as a result of their remarkable economic growth in recent years and, their interests in the international political and economic fields became closely inter-related as a result. Second, Japan and the West European countries as advanced industrial nations are faced with many common problems, such as resources and the environment, and the possibilities for mutual cooperation have increased. It has also become very important for Japan and Europe to promote mutual understanding and adjust their views in forums of multilateral consultation on the monetary problem, trade, resources and aid for the developing countries.

Thus, Japan and the West European countries have various common interests, and there are possibilities for extensive and concrete cooperation, Therefore, there is greater need to establish a new partnership suited to the needs of the diversified and complicated international community, instead of being contented with their traditionally friendly relations, The extensive exchanges between Japan and Europe in 1973 reflected the intentions of both sides to strengthen their cooperation, and it can be said that this growing interchange has greatly contributed to the expansion of the base of Japan's diplomacy.

However, relations between Japan and Europe at present are not yet fully satisfactory, and it is necessary to solve many problems hereafter. Some of the major problems include, first, the development of closer economic relations. The economic exchange between Japan and Europe, both in trade and capital, is not necessarily sufficient when weighed against the economic strength of both sides, and it is considered that there is room for further expansion. The deficits in many West European countries' trade with Japan, a sharp increase in exports of certain Japanese products to Europe and various obstacles facing European enterprises planning to do business in Japan are regarded as possible factors that could obstruct the promotion of economic exchange between Japan and Europe. It is hoped, therefore, that these problems will be solved amicably in order to develop economic relations between Japan and Europe in the form of an equilibrium at an expanded level. It is also considered that the promotion of cooperation in many fields, such as scientific and technical cooperation, cooperation on energy and development cooperation in third countries, and the strengthening of cooperative relations in concrete ways, will contribute not only to the interests of Japan and Western Europe but also to the prosperity and stability of the international community.

Second, there is the strengthening of the Japan-Europe dialogue in the political field. It is hoped that the dialogue between Japan and Europe in the political field will be strengthened in view of the fact that the EC now aims at political integration, although there may be complications facing the plan; that Japan and Western Europe, together with the United States, are important members of the free world, and that both Japan and Europe will be able to contribute in no small way to the stability and prosperity of the Middle East, Africa and Asia.

Third, the promotion of cultural exchange. Cooperation between Japan and Europe in the political and economic fields must be based on a deep understanding of each other's culture, national traits, traditions, etc., and it can be said that further expansion of cultural exchange is indispensable, It is expected that the funds for studies on Japan presented to the three countries on the occasion of Prime Minister Tanaka's visit to Europe will contribute considerably to cultural exchange between Japan and Europe.


5. The Soviet Union and Eastern Europe


(1) The Soviet Union

(A) Japan's relations with the Soviet Union have developed in the political, economic, cultural, personnel exchange and many other fields since the resumption of diplomatic relations in 1956. In particular, their economic relations have developed smoothly as evidenced by the fact that two-way Japan-Soviet trade in 1973 totaled $1,562 million (on a customs clearance basis). (Japan, together with the Federal Republic of Germany and the United States, is one of the Soviet Union's largest Western trading partners.) In the field of economic cooperation, the parties concerned in both countries are discussing large-scale projects concerning natural gas, petroleum, coking coal, etc., in addition to Siberian development projects (three, including the development of forest resources in the Far East) which have already been started, If the talks are successfully concluded in a form satisfactory to both sides, it will provide along-range outlook for the economies of Japan and the Soviet Union.

However, the biggest pending issue between Japan and the Soviet Union, namely, a settlement of the northern territorial issue and the conclusion of a peace treaty, remains un-settled. There are other pending problems, including the question of safe fishing operations by Japanese fishing boats in waters around the northern territories (Ed. Note), visits by Japanese to the graves of their relatives in the northern territories, Sakhalin and the mainland of the Soviet Union and also the question of realizing the repatriation of Japanese still living there since World War II.

(B) Prime Minister Tanaka visited the Soviet Union in October to hold frank talks with the top leaders of the Soviet Union on the northern territorial issue and other problems pending between Japan and the Soviet Union, with a view to laying the foundation for truly good neighborly and friendly relations between the two countries.

Chapter 3, Section 1, refers to the northern territorial issue as part of the pending problems taken up on the occasion of the Prime Minister's visit to the Soviet Union, The outcome of his talks with the Soviet Union on the other pending problems is as follows:

(a) Fisheries

The Prime Minister stressed "the need for long-term stabilization of fisheries in the northern Pacific, including the question of setting annual salmon and trout fishing quotas spread over two or more years" from the standpoint that it was undesirable for Japan and the Soviet Union to hold bitter negotiations over annual salmon and trout fishing quotas, etc., each year, As a result, both countries agreed to hold consultations on this problem between the Cabinet ministers concerned of both countries, as mentioned in the Japan-Soviet joint statement.

(b) Safe Fishing Operations

In order to prevent the "seizure" of Japanese fishing boats in water around the northern territories, the Prime Minister urged to Soviet Union to take remedial action, as a provisional measure until the conclusion of a peace treaty, from a humanitarian point of view to avert such unhappy events. As a result, agreement was reached to continue negotiations toward a settlement of this problem.

(c) Visits to Graves and Non-repatriated Japanese

The Prime Minister called upon the Soviet Union to take appropriate action from a humanitarian point of view to permit visits by Japanese to the graves of their relatives in the northern territories, Sakhalin and the mainland of the Soviet Union and also to allow the repatriation of Japanese not yet repatriated from the Soviet Union.

The Soviet Union promised to study the matter with due consideration and this was specified in the Japan-Soviet joint statement.

(d) Economic Cooperation

The Japan-Soviet summit talks agreed on the following points by taking into consideration the fact that the parties concerned in Japan and the Soviet Union were discussing five projects, namely, petroleum in Tyumen, natural gas in Yakutia, coking coal in southern Yakutia, prospecting for petroleum and natural gas on the continental shelf of Sakhalin and the second forest resources development project in the Far East, as large-scale plans utilizing economic cooperation between Japan and the Soviet Union. (i) It is desirable to carry out bilateral economic cooperation in as many fields as possible based on the principle of reciprocity and equality. (ii) Especially, their cooperation should be promoted in the joint development of natural resources in Siberia and also in such fields as trade, transportation, agriculture and fisheries. (iii) In carrying out such economic cooperation, the governments of both countries will promote the conclusion and smooth and timely execution of contracts between the parties concerned in both countries (private parties in the case of Japan). (iv) Inter-governmental consultations should be held in connection with the execution of contracts. (v) Japan-Soviet economic cooperation in Siberian development will not exclude participation by a third country.

(e) Conclusion of Various Agreements

The following agreements were signed on the occasion of the Prime Minister's visit to the Soviet Union:

(i) Treaty concerning the Protection of Migratory Birds and Birds on the Verge of Extinction and of Their Living Environment. 

This treaty mainly provides for a ban on catching birds that migrate between the two countries (287 species), restrictions on the import and export of birds on the verge of extinction, and cooperation in the exchange of information on the protection of such birds and their living environment,

(ii) Agreement concerning Scientific and Technical Cooperation,

This agreement provides for the exchange of scientists and technical experts, the holding of conferences and symposiums, the exchange of scientific and technical information, the execution of joint studies and the establishment of a Japan-Soviet Scientific and Technical Cooperation Committee for the enforcement of this agreement.

(iii) Agreement concerning the Exchange of Scholars and Researchers, Agreement concerning the Exchange of Official Publications, and Agreement concerning the Distribution of Government Publicity Materials.

These agreements stipulate the details for the smooth execution of the Japan-Soviet agreement concerning cultural exchange, which was concluded in January 1972.

(C) The agreements concluded on the occasion of Prime Minister Tanaka's visit to the Soviet Union are of very great significance for the future development of Japan-Soviet relations, as mentioned earlier. How to implement these agreements is an important diplomatic task for future relations between Japan and the Soviet Union.

Agriculture and Forestry Minister Yoshio Sakurauchi's visit to the Soviet Union from October 19 through 27 was the first round of Japan-Soviet negotiations under the agreement reached on the occasion of the Prime Minister's visit to the Soviet Union. Agriculture and Forestry Minister Sakurauchi negotiated with Fisheries Minister Aleksandr Akimovich Ishkov the question of safe fishing operations and long-term stabilization of fisheries in the northern Pacific. As a result, the two sides agreed in principle to decide the estimated fish catch quota for the following year at the same time as the salmon and trout catch quota for the current year, as well as to conclude separate two year agreements on crabs and tsubu shellfish. It was agreed to work out concrete details through separate talks between experts. However, no final agreement was reached on the question of safe fishing operations, and it was decided to continue negotiations.

Chairman Mikhail Sergeevich Solomentsev of the Council of Ministers of the Russian Republic (a candidate member of the Politburo of the Central Committee of the Soviet Communist Party) visited Japan from December 20 through 29 to attend the opening ceremony of the Great Siberian Fair. On the occasion of his talks with Foreign Minister Masayoshi Ohira and Chief Cabinet Secretary Susumu Nikaido, the two sides agreed that it was obligatory for both Japan and the Soviet Union to carry out in good faith the matters agreed upon at the Japan-Soviet summit talks.


(2) Eastern Europe

Although the political, economic and social systems of Japan are different from those of the countries of Eastern Europe, Japan has been trying to maintain and promote friendly relations with these countries from the basic standpoint of expanding the foundation of its diplomacy and promoting multilateral international relations.

On the other hand, the East European countries have deepened their understanding of Japan's rapid economic development in recent years, and have come to show a positive attitude toward the promotion of closer trade and economic relations with Japan with the progress of "detente" between the East and West in Europe. Reflecting this situation, trade between Japan and the East European countries has increased year by year, with the volume of their trade reaching $560 million in 1973 (an increase of about 50 per cent over the preceding year).

The exchange of visits between Japan and these countries has also become active, Especially, Foreign Minister Ohira's visit to Yugoslavia (April 29-May 1) was an event that deserves special mention in that it was the first visit to that country by a Foreign Minister of Japan. In turn, Foreign Minister Janos Peter of Hungary (April 6-11) and Foreign Minister Bohuslav Chnoupek of Czechoslovakia (November 15-21) visited Japan at the invitation of the Japanese Government, there by playing a big role in promoting friendly relations between Japan and these countries. (Notes concerning the promotion of cultural exchange were exchanged on the occasion of Foreign Minister Peter's visit. )

Japan established diplomatic relations with the German Democratic Republic on May 15, 1973. The two countries established their respective embassies in Tokyo and Berlin in October of the same year.

Despite the geographical distance and the difference in their systems, Japan and the East European countries have come to show greater mutual interest as already mentioned, and it is believed that there is a possibility of further progress in their relations, centering on economic relations. Moreover, reflecting the rapid industrialization and the rising standard of living in Eastern Europe and also the resultant active demand for technology and capital on the one hand, and the need for a shift in Japan's industrial structure on the other, there are signs of a shift from simple trade in commodities to industrial cooperation including joint ventures, a more advanced form of economic relationship. It is considered that the progress of such close economic relations will be influenced by developments in the political situation in the East and West, while such relations in themselves can serve as a great factor in interdependence between the East and the West.



to table of contents

Ed. Note. The phrase "northern territories" on this and following pages refers to the islands of Etorofu, Kunashiri, Shikotan and the Habomai island group which are located off the northeastern tip of Hokkaido and are inherent Japanese territories. They have been occupied by the Soviet Union since the end of World War II.