Press Releases

Japan-Jamaica Foreign Ministers’ Meeting and Dinner

February 7, 2024
Foreign Minister Kamikawa shaking hands with Jamaican foreign minister Kamina Johnson Smith
Foreign Minister Kamikawa exchanging souvenirs with Jamaican foreign minister Kamina Johnson Smith
(Photo) Japan-Jamaica Foreign Ministers’ Meeting

On February 7, commencing at 6:30 p.m., Ms. KAMIKAWA Yoko, Minister for Foreign Affairs of Japan, held a bilateral meeting (for approximately 45 minutes) and dinner (for approximately 60 minutes) with Senator the Honourable Kamina Johnson Smith, Minister of Foreign Affairs and Foreign Trade of Jamaica, during her visit to Japan as a guest of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs. The overview is as follows.

  1. Introduction
    1. Minister Kamikawa began by expressing her gratitude for the messages of sympathy from Prime Minister Holness and Minister Johnson Smith for the damage caused by the Noto Peninsula Earthquake. In addition, with this year marking the 60th anniversary of the establishment of diplomatic relations between Japan and Jamaica as well as the Japan-CARICOM Friendship Year 2024, Minister Kamikawa expressed her intention to cooperate with Minister Johnson Smith, who also currently serves as Chair of the CARICOM Council for Foreign and Community Relations (COFCOR), on further strengthening the J-J Partnership between Japan and Jamaica.
    2. In response, Foreign Minister Johnson Smith made statements welcoming the “kanreki”, the 60th anniversary, of the establishment of diplomatic relations between Japan and Jamaica and highly appreciating Japan's achievements as the G7 President and its efforts as a member of the United Nations Security Council. She also emphasized the importance of strengthening bilateral relations through political leadership and enhanced exchange at the grassroots level. She also expressed her desire to continue working closely with Minister Kamikawa as female foreign ministers.
  2. Bilateral Relations
    1. Minister Kamikawa stated that the two countries share common fundamental values and principles, and that she would like to further strengthen relations through high-level visits. In light of Japan-CARICOM Friendship Year 2024, the two ministers concurred to further promote cultural and personal exchanges in the future.
    2. Minister Kamikawa touched upon Japan’s long-time assistance for Jamaica’s socio-economic development and welcomed the Signing Ceremony for the Exchange of Notes concerning Japan’s Grant Aid for “the Economic and Social Development Programme”, which provides a fisheries and marine research vessel. Minister Johnson Smith expressed her appreciation for the development assistance that has been provided by Japan and her hope for further support for Jamaica's National Development Plan in line with the SDGs, as well as further assistance in the areas of security improvement and maritime affairs. She also expressed her appreciation for Japan’s support not only to Jamaica but also to the other CARICOM countries, including Haiti, where the situation remains unstable.
    3. Minister Kamikawa welcomed Jamaica’s announcement of its participation in Expo 2025 Osaka, Kansai, Japan. In addition, both ministers concurred to cooperate for the success of the Expo, as well as to continue their cooperation to strengthen relations in the economic field.
  3. Regional and International Affairs
    1. Minister Kamikawa and Minister Johnson Smith exchanged candid views on regional and international affairs, and shared the view on the importance of maintaining and strengthening a free and open international order based on the rule of law. The ministers also confirmed that they will work more closely together in addressing regional and international affairs, such as responses to North Korea, including its nuclear and missile development and the abductions issue, the situation in East Asia, the situation in Haiti, response to Russia’s aggression against Ukraine, and the situation surrounding Israel and Palestine.
    2. Furthermore, the ministers exchanged views on various issues facing the international community, including United Nations Security Council Reform, Disarmament and Non-Proliferation, and climate change, and shared the view on the importance of strengthening the multilateral system, including the United Nations. Moreover, Minister Kamikawa stated that she would like to strengthen cooperation on Women, Peace and Security (WPS). In response, Minister Johnson Smith commended the efforts based on the consistent leadership of Minister Kamikawa, referring to the WPS Task Force launched last month by her initiative and agreeing on the importance of promoting the WPS. She expressed her desire to cooperate closely with Japan between female foreign ministers. The two Ministers confirmed that they would work together on both bilaterally and multilaterally. Minister Kamikawa also explained Japan’s efforts regarding the discharge of ALPS treated water into the sea, including the contents of the IAEA Report published on January 30, and she asked continued understanding and support from Jamaica.
  4. At the meeting, Minister Kamikawa presented a pair of chopsticks of Wajima-nuri, lacquer ware made in Wajima area in the Noto Peninsula, to Minister Johnson Smith expressing her gratitude for the messages of sympathy by Jamaican Government for the damage caused by the Noto Peninsula Earthquake and wishing for the recovery of the affected areas. Also, local sake produced in Ishikawa Prefecture was served at the dinner. Minister Johnson Smith expressed once again her sympathy for the damage caused by the Noto Peninsula earthquake and expressed her appreciation for the heartfelt hospitality.

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