Joint Statement
1st Meeting of the Japan-United Arab Emirates Joint Economic Committee

December 17, 2007

On 17 December 2007, H.E. Mr. Masahiko Koumura, Minister for Foreign Affairs of Japan and H.E. Mr. Akira Amari, Minister of Economy, Trade and Industry of Japan on the Japanese side, and H.H. Sheikh Abdullah bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Minister of Foreign Affairs, United Arab Emirates, held the first meeting of the Japan-UAE Joint Economic Committee in Tokyo and reached the following conclusion:

  1. Both sides welcomed the commencement of the collaboration under the Joint Economic Committee with the holding of its first meeting, which was established during the visit to UAE by the then Prime Minister of Japan Shinzo Abe in April 2007. The Ministers also welcomed the fact that the meeting was held on the occasion of the awaited visit of Abu Dhabi Crown Prince, Deputy Supreme Commander of the UAE Armed Forces, H.H. Sheikh Mohammed bin Zayed Al Nahyan to Japan.
  2. Both sides expressed their expectation that the function of the Joint Committee mechanism would contribute to consolidating a multilayered partnership between Japan and UAE especially in the economic and investment fields.
  3. Based on such understanding, the Ministers decided to establish three Sub-Committees under the Joint Committee according to the attached terms of reference. Both sides stressed their shared intention to continue their cooperation through the Joint Economic Committee and its three Sub-Committees in an active and constant manner. Both sides also shared the view that, in accordance with the Memorandum establishing the Joint Economic Committee, additional sub-committees may be established by the Committee where necessary in the future to discuss further cooperation. Towards further development of the economic relations between Japan and UAE, both sides confirmed the importance of proposing and developing an action plan for the improvement of business environment, aiming at further increasing trade, investments and business opportunities between the two countries, taking into account the requests and expectations from the private sectors of both countries.
  4. Both sides reviewed and welcomed the progress of the negotiation on a Convention between Japan and the United Arab Emirates for the Avoidance of Double Taxation and the Prevention of Fiscal Evasion with Respect to Taxes on Income.
  5. The two sides shared concern over the instability of the oil market and reiterated their common view that the stability of the world oil market is a cornerstone for the sound growth of the world economy. In this regard, both sides decided to further promote bilateral cooperation in the energy field, based upon mutually complementary relationship between the UAE, with its large hydrocarbon resources, and Japan, with its advanced energy-related technologies. Both sides recognised the fact that Japanese private sector's technologies and activities in the UAE have been playing important roles in development of the UAE economy. They reaffirmed that the bilateral economic relations between the two countries have been built through business transactions by the Japanese corporations in various fields, starting from the energy sector, such as oil trade, upstream concessions and renewable energy projects, as well as the infrastructure development in the UAE. Both sides also recognized that diversifying economic activities between the two countries would be very important for further deepening mutual relationship. Recent developments in these fields include the followings: Japan Oil Development Co. Ltd. (JODCO) and Japan Oil, Gas and Metals National Corporation (JOGMEC) fund the Petroleum Institute (PI); International Petroleum Investment Company made direct investment in Cosmo Oil Co. Ltd.,; Japanese companies participate in renewable energy projects; and Japan Bank for International Cooperation (JBIC) and Abu Dhabi National Oil Company (ADNOC) advance with their financial cooperation.
  6. Both sides further decided to collaborate in coming up with a promotion scheme of small and medium sized enterprises for the UAE. The Japanese side emphasized the significant contribution that will be made by the wide use of environmentally friendly regional passenger aircraft developed in Japan for solving the environmental problems.
  7. The two sides also noted the importance of enhancing their cooperation on industrial and infrastructure development of cities in the UAE. Both sides shared the view that further developing their cooperation in the oil sector, including extension of concessions which is subject to mutual agreement in the coming years, would contribute to further strengthening Japan-UAE mutually complementary relations. Both sides have expressed their happiness with regards to the signing on the agreement on Abu Dhabi Oil Company (ADOC) field which will enhance the relations further between the two countries.
  8. Both sides exchanged the view over the global warming issue and stressed that the international community has to devise a strategy to control the global warming. In this regard, the Japanese side commended the positive initiatives taken by oil producing countries on emission reduction announced at the occasion of the OPEC summit meeting, while the UAE side appreciated Japan's Cool Earth 50 initiative as a contribution to the global discussion to address climate change. Both sides expressed their determination for a flexible, fair and effective global framework beyond 2012 in which all countries participate to address climate change.
  9. The Ministers welcomed the recent developments regarding the Free Trade Agreement (FTA) negotiations between the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) states and Japan. They shared their determination to work towards reaching an agreement in principle as soon as possible. Both sides reiterated that the early conclusion of an FTA would advance their economic relations, achieving a high-level liberalisation of the trade in goods and services. To this end, both sides reaffirmed their resolve to make every effort to achieve that goal with sufficient resources and enthusiasm.
  10. The Ministers decided to hold the first Sub-Committee meeting in Abu Dhabi in the first half of next year to explore the focus of discussion in the following Sub-Committee meetings. The Ministers also decided to hold the second Joint Committee meeting at an appropriate time, taking into account the discussion at the Sub-Committees and in accordance with the MOU establishing the Joint Committee.
Masahiko Koumura
Minister for Foreign Affairs of Japan
Co-Chair of Japan

Akira Amari
Minister of Economy, Trade and Industry of Japan
Co-Chair of Japan
Abudullah bin Zayed Al Nahyan
Minister of Foreign Affairs of the United Arab Emirates
Co-Chair of UAE

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