Joint Press Statement on the Japan-Azerbaijan Foreign Ministerial Meeting
Tokyo, 17th June, 2009
- H.E. Mr. Elmar Mammadyarov, Minister of Foreign Affairs of the Republic of Azerbaijan visited Japan at the invitation of the Government of Japan from June 16 to 21, 2009, and held a meeting with H.E. Mr. Hirofumi Nakasone, Minister for Foreign Affairs of Japan on June 17. At the meeting, the two Ministers discussed a wide range of issues, including the bilateral relations and global issues of mutual interest.
- Recalling the Joint Statement on the Further Development of Friendship and Partnership between Japan and the Republic of Azerbaijan issued on March 10, 2006 on the occasion of the visit to Japan by H.E. Mr. Ilham Aliev, President of the Republic of Azerbaijan, both sides reviewed the achievements up to the present and exchanged views on the future direction of the bilateral relations.
- Both sides highly valued the active and fruitful dialogues between Japan and Azerbaijan which were conducted in recent years, including the high-level policy consultations that have been held as many as four times in both capitals since the visit to Japan by President of the Republic of Azerbaijan in March 2006.
- Both Sides decided to hold regular meetings between the Foreign Ministries of the two countries to discuss a wide range of issues, including bilateral relations and all aspects of other international issues of common interest in order to enlarge the cooperation between two ministries, convinced that the constructive and stable dialogue will contribute to better mutual understanding and further development of the bilateral relations.
- The Azerbaijani side expressed its gratitude for the Official Development Assistance(ODA) consistently provided by Japan for the economic development of Azerbaijan including the Japanese ODA loan of "the Provincial Cities Water Supply and Sewerage Project" and Grant Assistance for Underprivileged Farmers which is aimed to improve water sanitation and food productivity in Azerbaijan, and expressed its expectation for the continuation of the Japanese cooperation.
- The Japanese side expressed its intention of continuing to extend its cooperation to the efforts by the Republic of Azerbaijan to achieve further democratization and market-oriented economy, considering that the stability and prosperity of the Republic of Azerbaijan, which is of importance to Japan from the viewpoint of geopolitics and energy policies, would contribute to the peace and stability of the whole Caucasus region.
- Considering the importance of the roles played by the Japan-Azerbaijan Economic Committee for further expansion of trade and investment between the two countries, both sides confirmed the necessity of holding a next joint meeting of the committee in the near future. In this regard, the Azerbaijani side stated its intention of further improving of its favorable investment climate. In this connection, both sides highly valued the negotiations held between the two countries hitherto with a view to the Republic of Azerbaijan`s early accession to the WTO.
- Both sides expressed their intention of further developing their cooperation in the field of energy. In this regard, they highly valued the smooth progress and contribution to the Azerbaijani economy being made by the Azeri-Chirag-Guneshli (ACG) oil field development project and the Baku-Tbilisi-Ceyhan (BTC) petroleum pipeline, in which Japanese private companies are participating.
- Both sides shared the view that the strengthening of people-to-people and cultural exchange between the two countries is of importance in fostering mutual understanding and enhancing cooperation in the field of science, education, culture and health.
- The Azerbaijani side expressed its deep appreciation for Japan's support for GUAM (Georgia, Ukraine, Azerbaijan and Moldova) and active cooperation and dialogue between Japan and GUAM. Both sides expressed their confidence that continuation of "GUAM-Japan" dialogue along with National Coordinators' Meeting held in Tokyo on February 19-20, 2009 and the Workshop on "Trade and Investment Promotion" held in Tokyo on February 1-9, 2009, will create a strong basis for further cooperation in spheres of mutual interest, such as tourism, trade and investment, energy saving and environmental protection.
- Both Sides emphasized the importance of a peaceful resolution of the Nagorno Karabakh conflict between Armenia and Azerbaijan through various channels including the OSCE Minsk Group based on the principles of sovereignty and territorial integrity of Azerbaijan and the inviolability of the internationally recognized borders. The Japanese side reiterated its support for efforts aimed at achieving peace and stability in the region, and affirmed its expectation for constructive engagement by international partners, as the Caucasus region, situated at the crossroad of Asia and Europe, has the potential to become a region of peace and prosperity for all populations.
- The Azerbaijani side expressed its appreciation for the contribution of Japan to a NATO Partnership for Peace Trust Fund project in Azerbaijan which aims to complete clearance of 571 hectares of Unexploded Ordnance (UXO) contaminated land.
- Both sides expressed their expectations for close cooperation at UN bodies and further expressed their determination to work together actively for an early realization of the United Nations Security Council reform, including the expansion of both permanent and non-permanent membership of the Security Council. In this regard, the Azerbaijani side reiterated its strong support for Japan's permanent membership of the Security Council, and in return the Japanese side expressed its deep appreciation for the support.
- Both sides exchanged views on international issues of mutual interest, including the situation in the Democratic People's Republic of Korea. The two ministers reaffirmed the adoption of UNSC Resolution 1874 and emphasized that the DPRK must comply with this result and other relevant UNSC resolutions. Both sides also underlined the need to comprehensively resolve the outstanding issues concerning DPRK including the abduction issue.
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