20th EU-Japan Summit
Brussels, 28 May 2011
Joint Press Statement
Mr Herman Van Rompuy, President of the European Council, Mr Jose Manuel Barroso, President of the European Commission, and Mr Naoto Kan, Prime Minister of Japan, met today in Brussels to reaffirm the close partnership between the European Union and Japan as like-minded global partners and major economies, commemorating the 20th anniversary of Summits between the two sides. United by a shared commitment to fundamental values and principles, including democracy, the rule of law and human rights, as well as to the market-based economy and sustainable development, and faced with common global challenges, Summit leaders are resolved to deepen bilateral relations from a comprehensive and long-term perspective.
Year of Solidarity and "Kizuna" (the bonds of friendship)
Summit leaders discussed the aftermath of the devastating earthquake and tsunami which struck East Japan on 11 March. Their shared conviction is that Japan's steadfast efforts will enable it to overcome the challenges, and emerge even stronger than before.
Japan expressed its sincere appreciation for the heartfelt support from the EU, which represents a tangible illustration of "kizuna" between the EU and Japan.
Building on their cooperation during the initial post-disaster relief effort, the EU and Japan decided to continue close dialogue and seek possibilities for collaboration during the recovery and reconstruction phase. Summit leaders also shared the intention to enhance cooperation on disaster management and humanitarian assistance. In light of the serious consequences caused by the earthquake and ensuing tsunami at the Fukushima-Daiichi nuclear power plant, they underlined the crucial importance of successfully stabilising the plant, and dealing with the radiological impact and with the health and environmental consequences of this accident in a continued spirit of transparency.
The lessons learned from Fukushima must be carefully studied by governments and the nuclear industry to ensure that events of this kind never occur again. Summit leaders are resolved to work bilaterally and with their international partners to promote the highest levels of nuclear safety around the world, in particular through the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) and the G8/G20. The EU and Japan will exchange information and views on the safety measures taken at nuclear power stations on both sides and further develop cooperation on strengthening international nuclear safety standards. Both sides have set in train action to ensure that safety at all their nuclear plants is rigorously assessed - and, if needed, reinforced as a matter of urgency. Summit leaders encouraged all their international partners to take similar measures. The EU and Japan shared the view that it is important for public policy responses to be based on solid scientific evidence, including in relation to goods and travel.
The Annex to this Statement sets out concrete "EU-Japan Cooperation Following the Great East Japan Earthquake and the Accident at the Fukushima-Daiichi Nuclear Power Plant [PDF]" approved by the Summit leaders.
Next Steps for Stronger EU-Japan Relations
The last EU-Japan Summit held in Tokyo on 28 April 2010 entrusted a joint High-Level Group with the identification of options for the comprehensive strengthening of all aspects of the EU-Japan relationship and defining the framework for implementing it. In light of this work, Summit leaders agreed to start the process for parallel negotiations for:
- a deep and comprehensive Free Trade Agreement (FTA)/Economic Partnership Agreement (EPA), addressing all issues of shared interest to both sides including tariffs, non-tariff measures, services, investment, Intellectual Property Rights, competition and public procurement; and
- a binding agreement, covering political, global and other sectoral cooperation in a comprehensive manner, and underpinned by their shared commitment to fundamental values and principles.
Summit leaders decided, to this end, that the two sides would start discussions with a view to defining the scope and level of ambition of both negotiations. Such scoping would be carried out as soon as possible.
In parallel with this, the European Commission will seek the necessary authorization for the negotiation of these agreements on the basis of a successful scoping.
Summit leaders have reviewed planned and ongoing bilateral cooperation initiatives. Among many, for establishing a just, comprehensive and lasting peace in the Middle East, the EU and Japan will enhance joint efforts to support the economic and social development of the Palestinian people. In this regard, the EU welcomes Japan's contribution to the EU's PEGASE mechanism. In Afghanistan, the EU and Japan continue to pursue cooperation on security, reintegration, and development assistance including the establishment of a police training centre in light of the transfer of security responsibility from international to the Afghan National Security Forces. The EU and Japan will also co-host a conference on Tajikistan-Afghanistan border management in the second half of 2011 in Dushanbe. For the safety of maritime navigation off the coast of Somalia and in the Gulf of Aden, the EU and Japan will continue to cooperate closely on counter-piracy in the region. Taking advantage of the Agreement between the European Community and the Government of Japan on Cooperation in Science and Technology, which recently entered into force, the EU and Japan will deepen and broaden the scope of their cooperation and launch new collaborative activities. They will also explore the possibility of establishing a cooperation framework on satellite navigation at governmental level. Summit leaders welcomed plans to deepen cooperation on the draft Code of Conduct of Outer Space activities with a view to promoting transparency and confidence-building measures in outer-space activities.
Summit leaders welcomed the recent development of Customs cooperation including the implementation of the mutual recognition of Authorised Economic Operator (AEO) programmes, which will facilitate trade between the EU and Japan.
Summit leaders reaffirmed their determination to continue to cooperate with the business communities on both sides, in particular through the EU-Japan Business Round Table.
Conscious of their global responsibility and of the depth and importance of their bilateral cooperation, Summit leaders decided today to establish a new framework for twice-yearly meetings of senior officials to oversee progress in their bilateral relations.
World Economy and Trade
Summit leaders underlined their determination to enhance cooperation and policy coordination bilaterally and with their G7/G8 and G20 partners to promote the recovery of the world economy, by securing strong, sustainable and balanced growth, fostering job creation, avoiding excessive macroeconomic imbalances and ensuring financial stability and fiscal sustainability. To this end, they will strive for effective and timely implementation, by all members, of the commitments made in the G20 framework and actively cooperate with a view to preparing the next G20 Summit in Cannes. They will remain vigilant to avoid disorderly movements and persistent exchange rate misalignments.
Recalling the importance of facilitating global trade and investment, Summit leaders noted with great concern the unsatisfactory progress in the Doha Development Agenda negotiations. They shared the view that all negotiating options must be examined at the WTO in a spirit of give and take in order to achieve an ambitious, balanced and comprehensive final agreement. Summit leaders also reaffirmed their determination to combat all forms of protectionism. They also committed to a rapid, ambitious and balanced conclusion of negotiations on the revision of the Government Procurement Agreement.
Recognising its importance in the industrial supply chain, Summit leaders are committed to ensuring that the global supply of raw materials, including rare earth, is secure and sustainable in order to realise stable economic growth.
Climate change remains an urgent global issue. Summit leaders shared the view that the EU and Japan would cooperate with a view to exerting leadership together in the field of climate change, promoting the development of low-carbon global economies that are safe and sustainable, consistent with the international objective of limiting the increase in global average temperature below 2°C. To this end, they will strive in particular for steady implementation of the Cancun Agreements and the adoption of a robust, global, fair, effective, comprehensive and legally-binding agreement with participation by all major economies. The Durban United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) Conference should constitute a stepping stone in this direction.
Summit leaders reaffirmed the importance of greening the economy for achieving sustainable development. They also shared the view that the United Nations Conference on Sustainable Development in Rio de Janeiro in 2012 offers an opportunity to raise the profile of the Green Economy, including Resource Efficiency, at the highest possible level and to promote it as a new model for sustainable global economic growth. They also reached a common recognition on the importance of implementing the outcomes of the 10th Meeting of the Conference of the Parties (COP10) of the Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD) in October 2010.
Summit leaders will continue and reinvigorate their bilateral energy cooperation on secure, safe and sustainable energy policies, and energy-related research and technology development, with a view to contributing to ensuring energy security and developing a low carbon economy. They will also continue to advance these goals through cooperation in the appropriate international organisations and initiatives.
Summit leaders confirmed their determination to jointly contribute to the successful achievement of the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) by 2015, where the aspect of human security is essential, with a special emphasis on countries where progress towards the MDGs is most off-track, including those in situations of fragility.
Summit leaders also confirmed their strong commitment to the prevention of and fight against terrorism and promotion of implementation of the UN Global Counter-Terrorism Strategy.
Summit leaders underlined the importance of fully implementing the reforms of the UN system adopted at the 2005 UN Summit, including reform of the main UN bodies, as referred to in the outcomes document, in order to strengthen the UN's capacity to effectively address challenges.
Summit leaders expressed their determination to strengthen the global non-proliferation architecture by supporting all multilateral treaties and arrangements that help to prevent and combat proliferation, and by promoting their implementation and universalisation. Summit leaders reiterated their commitment to seek a safer world for all and to create the conditions for a world without nuclear weapons, in accordance with the goals of the Treaty on the Non-Proliferation of Nuclear Weapons (NPT). They expressed their support for the implementation of the commitments made by all NPT States Parties at the 2010 NPT Review Conference.
Acknowledging the historic importance of the changes underway in the Middle East and North Africa, Summit leaders affirmed their support for the citizens' legitimate aspirations for democratic transition, economic modernisation and the respect for human rights. They condemned the violence against civilians and expressed continuous deep concern for the situations in the region. In particular, on Syria, they noted that both the EU and Japan have imposed restrictive measures with the objective of persuading the Syrian regime to change course, start genuine reforms and abandon repression and violence. On Libya, Summit leaders reaffirmed the need for the international community to intensify the efforts towards an inclusive political solution. They also noted the importance of productive dialogues between the EU and Japan for effective support towards the countries covered by the EU's Eastern Partnership policy.
Summit leaders exchanged views about the regional security environment of East Asia. They recalled the current security concerns and underlined the usefulness of the existing strategic dialogue between the EU and Japan. They also decided to continue their cooperation in those fields.
Summit leaders condemned the serious violation of the relevant UN Security Council (UNSC) resolutions and the 2005 Joint Statement of the Six-Party Talks in relation to North Korea's uranium enrichment activities. They urged North Korea to take concrete actions towards fulfilling its commitments and complying with its obligations, including denuclearization. In addition, they stressed the importance of addressing North Korea's human rights issues, including the abduction issue. Summit leaders expressed utmost concern at Iran's persistent failure to comply with its international obligations and requirements under all relevant UNSC and IAEA Board of Governors' Resolutions. They called on Iran to fully comply with its international obligations and requirements and to engage in a constructive dialogue.
Determined to build closer ties between the citizens of the EU and Japan, the two sides will continue to promote joint study and mobility programmes between higher education institutions, and have decided to launch exchanges between their diplomats.
Summit leaders congratulated the winner of the second EU-Japan English Haiku Contest held under the theme of "kizuna".
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