Press Conferences

Press Conference by Foreign Press Secretary ONO Hikariko

Wednesday, January 25, 2023, 3:45 p.m. Ministry of Foreign Affairs

This is a provisional translation by an external company for reference purpose only.

Definition of “Global South”

Yomiuri Shimbun, Abe: In his policy speech, Prime Minister Kishida mentioned strengthening its engagement with the “Global South.” Recently, the term “Global South” has been used in various places. How does the Government of Japan define “Global South”? If you do not have a definition, in what contexts is the term used?

Ms. ONO Hikariko, Press Secretary: The Government of Japan does not have a precise definition of the term “Global South,” and there are actually various views on it. However, it is my understanding that in general, it often refers to emerging and developing countries.

As you pointed out, in his policy speech on January 23, Prime Minister Kishida stated that the G7 should be united and strengthen engagement with the so-called “Global South” in order for the entire international community to cooperate in responding to various issues the world is facing.

MOFA’s policy is to ensure to strengthen engagement with the “Global South.”

Change of the Prime Minister of New Zealand

NHK, Morita: Changing the subject, the new Prime Minister of New Zealand, Chris Hipkins took office today. Former Prime Minister Ardern attracted attention as a female leader. She visited Japan last year and confirmed economic and security cooperation. Please tell us your reaction to the sudden resignation announcement of former Prime Minister Ardern, and your expectations for the new Prime Minister in terms of building future Japan-New Zealand relations.

Press Secretary Ono: I am aware that today, January 25, former Prime Minister Ardern of New Zealand stepped down and Prime Minister Hipkins took office.

From her inauguration in 2017, former Prime Minister Ardern’s leadership greatly contributed to strengthening the “Strategic Cooperative Partnership” between Japan and New Zealand. We also appreciate her efforts for promoting global women’s empowerment and diversity, including in Japan.

New Zealand is a like-minded country in the Indo-Pacific region with which we share fundamental values. Japan will closely cooperate with newly inaugurated Prime Minister Hipkins as well as toward realizing a “Free and Open Indo-Pacific” (FOIP).

Visit to Japan by the Secretary General of NATO

Asahi Shimbun, Nagasaki: The General Secretary of NATO is scheduled to visit Japan at the end of January and meet with Prime Minister Kishida. What discussions and results are expected for the meeting, including review of the Individual Partnership and Cooperation Programme Between Japan and NATO?

Press Secretary Ono: Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg of NATO will visit Japan from January 30 to February 1. During the visit to Japan by the Secretary General of NATO, it is scheduled to be an exchange of views regarding cooperation toward maintaining and strengthening the free and open international order based on the rule of law, including the response surrounding Russia’s aggression against Ukraine as well as realizing FOIP.

In addition, we are planning to have a wide-ranging exchange of views regarding Japan-NATO cooperation and regional affairs. We expect that this visit to Japan by the Secretary General of NATO will be a good opportunity to further strengthen Japan-NATO relations.

Nothing has been decided at this point regarding the specific results.

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