Japan-Philippines Foreign Ministers’ Telephone Talk
On May 21, commencing at around 2 p.m. Mr. MOTEGI Toshimitsu, Minister for Foreign Affairs of Japan, held a telephone talk with Hon. Teodoro L. Locsin Jr., Secretary of Foreign Affairs of the Republic of the Philippines, for approximately 20 minutes. The overview is as follows:
1. At the outset, Minister Motegi once again expressed his gratitude to Minister Locsin for the hospitality accorded to him during his visit to Manila this January, and paid his respects by recognizing the ongoing efforts of the Philippine government in response to the novel coronavirus disease (COVID-19) outbreak. Minister Locsin explained the current situation on the COVID-19 control in the Philippines.
2. The two ministers concurred with each other on the importance of international cooperation in addressing COVID-19. Minister Motegi expressed his gratitude for the Philippine government’s assistance for the repatriation of Japanese nationals from the Philippines and other countries. Minister Motegi also made a request for continued cooperation on Japanese nationals’ safe well-being and Japanese companies’ steady business operations in the Philippines. In response, Minister Locsin expressed his gratitude for the Japanese government’s support for the repatriation of the Filipino crew from the cruise ship moored in Japan.
3..Furthermore, Minister Motegi explained Japan’s assistance package for the Philippines in the wake of COVID-19, such as technical cooperation, the provision of medical supplies and Avigan tablets, and the Crisis Response Emergency Support Loan. Minister Locsin expressed his deep gratitude for Japan’s assistance.
4. Lastly, Minister Motegi conveyed his intention to accelerate dialogues, once the situation subsides, on various bilateral agenda, including quality infrastructure development, the Mindanao peace process, security & defense, and coordination on region-wide affairs such as the South China Sea issue. Minister Locsin responded by expressing his willingness to further strengthen the Japan-Philippines relations, and closed the talk with the two ministers sharing their view toward the further enhancement of the bilateral relations.