Meeting of Minister for Foreign Affairs Fumio Kishida with Secretary of Foreign Affairs José Antonio Meade Kuribreña of the United Mexican States

June 27, 2014

  1. On June 27, Minister for Foreign Affairs Fumio Kishida held a foreign ministers’ meeting, followed by a lunch meeting, with H.E. Dr. José Antonio Meade Kuribreña, Secretary of Foreign Affairs of the United Mexican States, during his working visit to Japan following an invitation by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs. The overview of the meetings is as follows.

    1. Foreign Minister Kishida thanked Foreign Secretary Meade for the warm welcome that he received when he visited Mexico in April last year, and stated that he is happy to meet with Secretary Meade again for the first time since the Geneva II Conference on Syria that was held in January this year. Minister Kishida also expressed his hope that Secretary Meade will return to Mexico from this visit to Japan with a positive impression of his country. In particular, Minister Kishida commented that as this year commemorates the “Japan-Mexico Exchange Year,” this year would be a time for reflecting on the exchanges that have taken place between the two countries over the past 400 years, and expressed his intention to cooperate with Secretary Meade with a view to further strengthening their bilateral relations.

    2. Secretary Meade conveyed his gratitude for the invitation to Japan, and commented that he and Minister Kishida were appointed to their positions around the same time in 2012, and that the first foreign minister that he welcomed to Mexico was Minister Kishida. Secretary Meade added that Japan is Mexico’s oldest friend in Asia and that this fact is reflected in the history of exchanges between the two countries up to the present time. Foreign Minister Meade also mentioned that this year marks the 55th anniversary of former Prime Minister Nobusuke Kishi’s visit to Mexico, and that the investments made by Nissan and other Japanese investors that resulted from this visit have blossomed. The Foreign Secretary added that Mexico has not forgotten the fact that during a visit by former Foreign Minister Shintaro Abe to Mexico 30 years ago, Japan agreed to provide support for Mexico, which was struggling with foreign debts at that time. Furthermore, Secretary Meade stated that over the past 10 years, the volume of trade between Japan and Mexico has doubled to reach 22 billion USD, and also pointed out that investments have expanded significantly, and that the number of Japanese travelers visiting Mexico has surpassed 100,000 in 2013. The Foreign Secretary commented that on behalf of the Government of Mexico, he would like to once again invite Prime Minister Shinzo Abe to visit Mexico, and the two foreign ministers agreed to both accelerate preparations aimed at having Prime Minister Abe make this visit.

    3. Minister Kishida welcomed the strengthening of the friendly relationship between Japan and Mexico. Moreover, in the context of the severe strategic environment that surrounds the Asia-Pacific region, Minister Kishida stated that Japan would promote a policy of “Proactive Contribution to Peace” based on the principle of international cooperation in order to contribute to the stability and prosperity of the international society, and that Japan would remain a country of peace. In addition, Minister Kishida stated that attempts to change the status quo by force is inadmissible in international society and emphasized the need for peace and stability in the international society based on international law. In response to the above, Secretary Meade stated that in the Latin American region resolving conflicts through peaceful measure is the prevailing philosophy and that Mexico has respected such a philosophy emphasizing peaceful solutions to conflicts and observation of the international law.

    4. Secretary Meade stating that Japan and Mexico are currently participating in the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) negotiations, and it is time for the two countries to hold consultations on the Japan-Mexico Economic Partnership Agreement (EPA), expressed his hope that both sides would make efforts on these issues. In response, Minister Kishida stated that he hoped for the early conclusion of the TPP. With regards to the Japan-Mexico EPA, Minister Kishida stated that he hoped to move forward while taking into consideration the progress of the TPP negotiations.

    5. The two ministers also exchanged views on the situations in China, North Korea, Ukraine, and Latin America. When Minister Kishida stated that he would like to advance concrete cooperation with the Pacific Alliance, which is currently chaired by Mexico, Secretary of Foreign Affairs Meade stated that he would promote cooperation while receiving specific proposals from Japan. Finally, touching on the triangular cooperation between Japan and Mexico in the past 10 years, Minister Kishida stated that he would cooperate for the development of the Latin American region.

(* The foregoing is a provisional translation. The above date denotes the date of the issue of the original press release in Japanese.)