Prime Minister Obuchi's Four Initiatives
for Japan-ASEAN Cooperation toward the 21st century

December 1998

At the Japan-ASEAN Summit Meeting, Prime Minister Keizo Obuchi will reaffirm Japan's commitment to carry out and follow up the initiatives agreed at the last Japan-ASEAN Summit Meeting in Kuala Lumpur. Based on that, Prime Minister Obuchi will propose the following initiatives in order to enhance Japan-ASEAN cooperation toward the 21st century.

1. Promoting Dialogues and Cooperation for the 21st century

a) Enhancing summit level dialogues

  • Arranging meetings between Japanese Prime Minister and ASEAN Heads of State /Government as frequently as possible taking advantage of suitable occasions

b) Holding "Vision 2020 Japan-ASEAN Consultation Conference"

  • This conference, consisted of eminent persons mainly from academic circles and private sector in both Japan and ASEAN, will be convened several occasions for a year to draft recommendations on Japan-ASEAN cooperation for the 21st century taking into account "Hanoi Plan of Action for ASEAN VISION 2020", and present them to each government and to the next formal ASEAN Summit in 2001.

2. Cooperation to address the Asian economic crisis

a) Revitalizing Japanese economy

  • Implementing the Comprehensive Economic Measures (announced on April)
  • Recovery of the confidence of the financial systems
  • Further promotion of Emergency Economic Package

b) Cooperation for Asian countries' economic recovery

(1) Implementing "New Miyazawa Initiative"

  • Implementing the initiative as quickly as possible (a part of them will be announced soon)
  • Establishing "Asian Currency Crisis Support Facility" (approx. $3 billion) in the Asian Development Bank

(2) Cooperation for reactivating economic activities and industries in the ASEAN countries

  • Strengthening cooperation for developing small- and medium- sized enterprises and supporting industries
  • Establishing a special yen loan facility with concessional terms and condition (Up to 600 billion yen (approx. $5 billion) for 3 years)
  • Prompt implementation of the Work Program adopted at the first meeting of AEM-MITI Economic and Industrial Cooperation Committee

(3) Human resources development

  • Implementing steadily "Japan-ASEAN Program for Comprehensive Human Resources Development" (announced at the Japan-ASEAN summit as many as 20,000 trainees and students over 5 years. By December of this year, more than 5,000 have been invited.)
  • Local training of 10,000 people who have important roles in developing industries in the ASEAN countries
  • Dispatching policy advisors

(4) Efforts in the field of the international finance

  • Promoting "Internationalization of Yen currency"
  • Cooperation for strengthening the international finance system

3. Cooperation to tackle "Human Security" related issues

a) Enhancing cooperation for strengthening social safety nets

  • Japan supports programs of the ASEAN countries to provide social safety nets for the socially vulnerable by making use of the Japanese Official Development Assistance.

b) Establishing "Human Security Fund" in the United Nations

  • Japan will establish a fund of 500 million yen (4.2 million dollars) in order to support efforts by the international organizations to address "Human Security" related issues, such as environment, drugs, international organized crimes.

4. Promoting intellectual dialogues and cultural exchanges

a) Enhancing intellectual dialogues

  • Japan will support holding the second "An Intellectual Dialogue on Building Asia's Tomorrow" symposium in one of the ASEAN countries in 1999. The first symposium was held in Tokyo on December, 2-3, 1998.

b) Cultivating intellectual resources and exchanges for the future

  • Japan will establish a center in Tokyo for post-graduate students and researchers from the world to interact and send their message to the international community.

Japan-ASEAN Solidarity Fund

  • US$20 million as "Solidarity Fund" will be remitted soon to the "ASEAN Foundation" to be put effective use for education, human resources development, business exchanges and other activities.

Back to Index