Overview of Japan-US Summit Meeting

26 May 2003

From 22 to 23 May 2003, Prime Minister Junichiro Koizumi visited the private residence of President George W. Bush of the United States in Crawford, Texas, where the two leaders held a Summit Meeting. The leaders had in-depth and candid discussions on various issues currently facing Japan, the United States and the rest of the world in a warm and friendly atmosphere, and further deepened their mutual trust.

The following is an outline of the Japan-US Summit Meeting that took place from 9:40 to 11:00am local time on 23 May 2003.

1. Overview

The leaders reflected on the 150-year history of exchanges between Japan and the US and confirmed that today's alliance between Japan and the US is truly global in nature. They agreed to further strengthen the "Japan-US alliance in the global context." During the Summit Meeting, the leaders frankly exchanged views on Japan-US security cooperation (including ballistic missile defense) and the economy, as well as issues of urgency such as the fight against terrorism, weapons of mass destruction, North Korea, Iraq and the Middle East. In addition, United Nations reform and the military/civilian joint use of Yokota Air Base were discussed.

From 8:30am to 9:30am on the same day, Prime Minister Koizumi and Deputy Chief Cabinet Secretary Shinzo Abe were invited to attend the intelligence briefing to the President.

2. Issues

1) "Japan-US alliance in the global context"/the 150th anniversary of Japan-US relationship

On the occasion of the 150th anniversary of Japan-US relationship, the leaders agreed to reinforce "Japan-US alliance in the global context."

2) Japan-US Security Cooperation

  1. Prime Minister Koizumi stated that both governments should further promote consultation, including on efforts to address global issues, to make our cooperation in the security area even stronger. In addition, Prime Minister Koizumi stated that ballistic missile defense was an important agenda in Japan's defense policy and that its consideration would be accelerated. President Bush responded by stating that he wished to deepen and strengthen cooperation concerning ballistic missile defense.
  2. The leaders concurred on the importance of reducing the burden on Okinawa.

3) Economy

  1. President Bush stated that Japan and the United States should be the engine for global economic growth, and that he admired the determination and efforts of Prime Minister Koizumi concerning special zones for structural reform, reform of the banking sector, and the Industrial Revitalization Cooperation of Japan. He also extended his respect and support for the Prime Minister's leading role in the issue of non-performing loans and the injection of public funds into Resona Bank.
  2. Prime Minister Koizumi responded that with the cooperation of the Bank of Japan, he would make every effort to overcome deflation and secure a rise in consumer prices. With regard to Resona Bank, Prime Minister Koizumi stated that public funds were injected before it led to a financial crisis. The Prime Minister stated that stock prices had "bottomed out" and that the actual situation of the Japanese economy was not in such bad condition.
  3. President Bush stated that the United States is in favor of a strong dollar, which, in any case, was something that would be determined by the markets. Prime Minister Koizumi stated that if a strong dollar was good for the United States it would probably be mutually beneficial.

4) Iraqi Reconstruction and the Middle East

  1. Prime Minister Koizumi stated that it was good that combat operations in Iraq ended early, and that the adoption of UN Security Council Resolution 1483 led to the rebuilding of international solidarity. Prime Minister Koizumi also stated that he believed President Bush also understood the importance of international solidarity, including through the United Nations, and that he wished to continue cooperation with the US in this area.
  2. President Bush expressed his appreciation for Japan's support for military action in Iraq and stated that visible cooperation for the reconstruction of Iraq would be useful. In response, Prime Minister Koizumi stated that Japan would proactively consider what to do for the reconstruction of Iraq, and play a positive role. On contributions by the Self-Defense Forces (SDF), Prime Minister Koizumi stated that there was an idea to dispatch SDF C-130 aircraft based on current legislation to transport humanitarian supplies between the countries neighboring Iraq and that he was first considering this. The Prime Minister also stated that the dispatch of the SDF and others to assist in the reconstruction of Iraq was something for Japan itself to decide, and that Japan wished to make a contribution commensurate with its national power and standing. In addition, the Prime Minister stated that he would consider providing assistance to Iraq in collaboration with countries such as Egypt.
  3. Prime Minister Koizumi expressed his expectations for the United States to play a leadership role in the Middle East peace process, and stated that (i) it was important to ensure that the reconstruction of Iraq led to peace in the Middle East, and that the country with the greatest influence on the Middle East peace process as well as Israel was the United States; and that (ii) Japan would seek to offer complementary assistance for the Middle East peace process through cooperation with countries in the region such as Egypt, which he would visit after his stay in Texas.

5) North Korea

  1. Concerning North Korea, Prime Minister Koizumi stated the following: (i) without a solution to issues such as the abduction issue, we will not normalize our relations with North Korea; the basic position outlined in the Japan-DPRK Pyongyang Declaration that normalization would occur only after comprehensively resolving not only the abduction issue, but also other issues such as the nuclear weapons issue, the missile issue and issues of the past has not changed; (ii) Japan understands the US position to leave all options on the table, however, our response to North Korea should be different from that to Iraq; (iii) it is important to reach a peaceful solution; (iv) coordination among Japan, the US and the Republic of Korea is important; (v) it is essential that Japan and the Republic of Korea participate (in the multilateral talks); (vi) if North Korea further escalates the situation, tougher measures would be required; (vii) dialogue and pressure are necessary to achieve a peaceful solution; (viii) Japan would crack down more rigorously on illegal activities by North Korea; and (ix) we appreciate the way in which the US received the families of the abductees on the occasion of their visit to the US.
  2. In response, President Bush stated the following: (i) the US would not give in to North Korea's blackmail; (ii) it is significant that China has started to play a responsible role; (iii) it is important to convene five-country talks (with the participation of Japan and the Republic of Korea) to persuade North Korea; (iv) the US is confident that this issue can be resolved peacefully and to this end decisive actions are necessary; (v) North Korea's proliferation of nuclear weapons and narcotics can not be tolerated; and (vi) the abductions were a despicable act, and the US would stand squarely with Japan until all Japanese citizens kidnapped by North Korea are fully accounted for, and that he strongly condemned the kidnapping of Japanese citizens by North Korea (to which Prime Minister Koizumi expressed his appreciation).

6) Fight Against Terrorism and Proliferation of Weapons of Mass Destruction

  1. Prime Minister Koizumi stated that Japan would advance the fight against terrorism and weapons of mass destruction with firm resolve and that while Japan and the US had different roles and approaches, Japan would continue to cooperate with firm resolve with the United States to eliminate terrorism.
  2. President Bush stated that Japan and the United States were partners in the war on terror, that in Afghanistan, Japanese Maritime Self-Defense Force vessels have helped refuel coalition vessels, and that the US and Japan were working together to complete a major highway in Afghanistan.

7) Civil-military Dual Use of Yokota Air Base

Prime Minister Koizumi stated that he recognized that Yokota Air Base was playing an extremely important role as a key facility/area for the US Forces in Japan. He added that bearing in mind the current international situation surrounding Japan, it would not be possible to take any action that would hinder the capability and response readiness of the US Forces and hamper the achievement of the objectives of the Japan-US Security Treaty. Prime Minister Koizumi stated however that given that the air base was in close proximity to the city center, he would like to have the possibility of some form of civil-military dual use considered so that the air base could be utilized even more effectively. President Bush expressed his understanding and stated that a feasibility study would be conducted. The leaders agreed to jointly conduct the feasibility study.

8) Global Issues

  1. United Nations Reform
    Prime Minister Koizumi stated that reforming the United Nations, including the Security Council, was important in order to enhance the authority of the UN after Iraq. The Prime Minister stated that reform to strengthen the United Nations should be tackled in view of the current status of such issues as the enemy clause in the UN Charter, and that he sought to make various efforts in this regard together with the United States. President Bush responded that the United States fully understood this position, and that it intended to follow-up on UN reform.
  2. The Fight Against Poverty, Hunger and Diseases, WTO Trade Negotiations, Site Proposed for ITER
    The leaders confirmed their commitment to the global fight against poverty, hunger and diseases. They also confirmed their commitment to concluding the global trade negotiations at the WTO with a view to bringing about further prosperity in the world. Prime Minister Koizumi requested cooperation in bringing the International Thermonuclear Experimental Reactor (ITER) to Rokkasho-mura in Japan. President Bush stated that he would look into this issue.

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