Diplomatic Bluebook 2001

B. The G8 Kyushu-Okinawa Summit

1. Overview

During the first half of 2000, Japan prepared for the July G8 Kyushu-Okinawa Summit as the highest priority issue on its foreign policy agenda. The late Prime Minister Keizo Obuchi selected Okinawa as the Summit venue after a soul-searching process in which he examined all possible elements, while Prime Minister Yoshiro Mori served as Chair delivering a positive and powerful message of peace to the world from Okinawa and leading the world in throwing open the door to the 21st century.

As befits a Summit held in the landmark year of 2000, the G8 Kyushu-Okinawa Summit became a forum for a review of the G8's role until the present and discussion over its role in the 21st century. Three key themes were chosen-greater prosperity, deeper peace of mind, and greater world stability. Under these themes, heated discussion took place on issues facing the international community, namely, development issues, including Information and Communications Technology (IT) and infectious diseases; crime and drugs; and also regional issues, such as the Korean Peninsula.

One of the characteristics of the 2000 Summit was the pursuit of action-oriented initiatives. The Communiqué included numerous references to concrete actions-numerical targets for the eradication of infectious disease, for example, as well as specific conflict prevention efforts. At the G8 Kyushu-Okinawa Summit, Japan, as the Chair of the G8, announced new specific support measures in the area of IT and infectious diseases, as well as development-related measures designed to strengthen conflict prevention. Further, Japan hosted a number of meetings to follow up on these issues.*5.

Another characteristic was Japan's endeavor as Chair to increase the transparency of the Summit process. The swift advance of globalization has diversified the agenda handled by the Summit. As a result, for the G8 to continue to play a key role for the benefit of the world as a whole, it has become especially important that the Summit strengthen its partnerships with non-G8 members, international organizations, and non-governmental organizations (NGOs), etc. To this end, Japan invited leaders of developing countries, heads of international organizations, and leaders from IT-related private-sector companies to Tokyo on the eve of the Summit to exchange views with G8 leaders. Opportunities for dialogue with NGO representatives were also arranged in Okinawa, ensuring that a range of viewpoints were reflected in the Summit. This succession of dialogues is noteworthy in having established a direction for the G8 in addressing global issues in the 21st century.

The G8 Kyushu-Okinawa Summit was also the first Summit to be held in Asia in seven years. As the only participant from Asia, Japan worked to reflect an Asian perspective, with, for example, Prime Minister Obuchi visiting Cambodia, Laos and Thailand in Southeast Asia at the beginning of the year, and also attending the Japan-ASEAN Summit Meeting held on the margins of the 10th Session of the United Nations Conference on Trade and Development (UNCTAD) in Bangkok in February. Japan also created opportunities to gather Asian views on the occasion of the visits of Prime Minister Mori and Foreign Minister Kono to the ROK in March, and Chinese Foreign Minister Tang Jiaxuan's visit to Japan in May. In June, Prime Minister Mori attended the Japan-ASEAN Summit Meeting held in Tokyo on the occasion of former Prime Minister Obuchi's funeral, engaging in active dialogue with Asia.

The G8 Kyushu-Okinawa Summit followed the example of the previous two Summits which were restricted to meetings among leaders, and drew on discussion at the prior Finance Ministers' Meeting in Fukuoka and Foreign Ministers' Meeting in Miyazaki.

2. Fukuoka Finance Ministers' Meeting

The Finance Ministers' Meeting was held in Fukuoka City on July 8. Finance Minister Kiichi Miyazawa served as Chair, with an agenda focusing on (1) the impact of the IT revolution on the economy and finance; (2) strengthening of the international financial architecture; (3) actions against the improper use and abuse of the global financial system; and (4) poverty reduction and economic development. A report was concluded and submitted by the G7 Finance Ministers to the G8 Heads of State or Government.

3. Miyazaki Foreign Ministers' Meeting

The G8 Foreign Ministers' Meeting was held on July 12-13 in Miyazaki City, Miyazaki Prefecture. Chaired by Foreign Minister Yohei Kono, the meeting had in-depth discussions on a wide range of issues with a view to world stability, one of the three main themes of the G8 Kyushu-Okinawa Summit. These included global issues such as conflict prevention, disarmament, non-proliferation and arms control, terrorism, and United Nations (UN) reforms; regional situations such as the Korean Peninsula and the Balkans; and also socioeconomic issues such as crime and the environment. Results were presented in Conclusions of the G8 Foreign Ministers' Meeting and reflected in discussion at the Summit held in Okinawa from July 21. In terms of conflict prevention in particular, Ministers issued G8 Miyazaki Initiatives for Conflict Prevention as a separate document, making the first step toward concrete action by the G8. The G8 stressed the importance of pursuing a "Comprehensive Approach" drawing from the range of political, security, economic, financial, environmental, social, and development policies in an integrated manner, from the pre-conflict phase to the post-conflict phase. Specific measures included withholding permission to export small arms to conflict regions. Japan announced its own program for dealing with the small arms issue, as well as presenting "Action from Japan," a work program designed to strengthen conflict prevention in the development area. In addition, the meeting addressed UN reforms, expressing the G8's commitment to reforming and strengthening the Security Council and other aspects of the UN system. In terms of dialogue with non-G8 members, foreign ministers from the Non-Aligned Movement (NAM) Troika (South Africa, Bangladesh and Colombia), the G77 Chair (Nigeria), and Thailand were invited to a breakfast meeting with the G8 foreign ministers.

4. Okinawa Summit

The G8 Kyushu-Okinawa Summit was held on July 21-23 in Okinawa, chaired by Prime Minister Mori.

At the G8 Summit, under the first theme of "greater prosperity," leaders discussed IT, development issues "including infectious diseases, and trade." The Okinawa Charter was adopted in regard to IT, calling for world efforts to utilize the opportunities offered by IT and to close the digital divide. Leaders also decided to establish the Digital Opportunities Task Force (DOT Force) to consider concrete action toward narrowing the international digital divide (Chapter II, Section 4-B). To address infectious diseases, which are a major development obstacle in developing countries, specific numerical objectives were drawn up, and leaders agreed to strengthen efforts to combat HIV/AIDS, tuberculosis, and malaria. In this context, Japan presented its own initiative as Chair to commit a total of US$18 billion for IT and infectious diseases, two areas which Japan views as crucial in removing disparities between the industrialized and developing countries in the 21st century and providing greater prosperity for all. Turning to trade, leaders further agreed to boost their support to enable developing countries to enjoy more of the benefits of the World Trade Organization (WTO)-centered multilateral trading system, and also to redouble their efforts toward the early launch of a new WTO round with sufficiently broad agendas so as to respond to all members' interests, including those of developing countries.

In the context of the second theme, "deeper peace of mind," leaders discussed crime, drugs, biotechnology, food safety, and the environment. They affirmed their commitment to establishing an effective international framework to deal with transnational organized crime, which is becoming increasingly serious with the advance of globalization, and also agreed to collaborate in dealing with cyber-crime and other high-tech crimes, as well as to reinforce international cooperation against the production and trafficking of illegal drugs, which are posing a growing world threat. Where Europe and the U.S. had been sharply divided on the subject of biotechnology and food safety, at Okinawa, a common understanding was reached on promoting scientific consideration through various fora and on strengthening dialogue with the inclusion of developing countries and civil society, establishing a future direction toward a global consensus on these issues. In the area of the environment, leaders affirmed their strong commitment to the early entry into force of the Kyoto Protocol and affirmed that a task force would be established on renewable energy.

Looking at the third theme, "greater world stability," leaders considered political issues, including regional situations. Northeast Asia is an area of particularly critical importance to Japan's security, and strong initiative on the part of Prime Minister Mori lay behind the G8 Statement on Korean Peninsula, which expressed expectations of a constructive response from North Korea to international concerns over security and humanitarian issues, as well as full G8 support for positive developments, such as the inter-Korean Summit Meeting.

The G8 Statement on Regional Issues affirmed the importance of support for the Middle East peace process and of G8 cooperation in dealing with situations in South Asia, the Balkans, Africa, and Cyprus. Turning to conflict prevention, leaders affirmed the importance of a "Culture of Prevention" and announced concrete efforts in areas such as illicit trade in diamonds and small arms. Addressing disarmament, non-proliferation, and arms control, leaders expressed their determination to promote the entry into force of the Comprehensive Nuclear-Test-Ban Treaty (CTBT) and the early initiation of the negotiation of the Fissile Material Cut-Off Treaty.

The G8 Summit was preceded by the G7 Summit, which discussed the G7 economies, the Heavily Indebted Poor Countries (HIPC) issue, the international financial system and financial crime, and nuclear safety in Ukraine. Discussion was summarized in a G7 Statement.

This was the first time the Summit was held in a Japanese city other than Tokyo. Citizens of Okinawa joined together to offer a warm welcome to the G8 leaders visiting Okinawa for the Summit. Leaders were able to experience Okinawa's warm hospitality and discover the region's rich culture and history. Before and after the Summit Meeting, domestic and foreign media introduced Okinawa to the world in various ways. "The eyes of the world to Okinawa, the heart of Okinawa to the world"-the great hope for the Summit from Okinawa-was literally realized, and this should contribute to the further development of Okinawa in a number of ways in the years to come.


  1. The Digital Opportunities Task Force (DOT Force), as well as the Okinawa International Conference on Infectious Diseases, etc.

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