Japan - United States Relations, 1945 - 1997

23-24 March 1997:

Vice-President Gore visits Japan. In his speech at the Global Environmental Action meeting, he praises the U.S.-Japan Common Agenda as being "one of the most successful examples of bilateral cooperation the world has ever seen."

15 December 1996:

Conclusion of U.S.-Japan insurance consultations.

2 December 1996:

A Security Consultative Committee meeting is held in Tokyo attended by Foreign Minister Ikeda, Minister of State for Defense Kyuma, Defense Secretary Perry and U.S. Ambassador to Japan Mondale at which the SACO (Special Action Committee on Okinawa) Final Report is approved. Full implementation of the plans and measures in the Report will mean the return of approximately 21% of the total acreage of U.S. facilities and areas in Okinawa.

5 November 1996:

Re-election of President Clinton.

2 August 1996:

Conclusion of U.S.-Japan Semiconductor talks.

27 June 1996:

Prime Minister Hashimoto meets with President Clinton in Lyon during the G-7 summit.

17 April 1996:

Upon President Clinton's visit to Japan, Prime Minister Hashimoto and the President reaffirm the importance of the Japan-U.S. security relationship and issue the Japan-U.S. Joint Declaration on Security: Alliance for the 21st Century.

23-25 February 1996:

Prime Minister Hashimoto visits California, the United States, for his first summit meeting with President Clinton.

11 January 1996:

Inauguration of Hashimoto Cabinet.

15 August 1995:

Prime Minister Murayama issues a statement on the 50th Anniversary of the end of World War II. The statement says, "During a certain period in the not too distant past, Japan, following a mistaken national policy advanced along the road to war, only to ensnare the Japanese people in a fateful crisis, and, through its colonial rule and aggression, caused tremendous damage and suffering to the people of many countries, particularly to those of Asian nation." He also expresses "profound gratitude for the indispensable support and assistance extended to Japan by the countries of the world, beginning with the United States of America."

29 June 1995:

Conclusion of Japan-U.S. Framework Talks on auto and auto parts issues.

7 November 1994:

Conclusion of Japan-U.S. Framework Talks on government procurement (telecommunications equipment and services, and medical technology products and services).

11 October 1994:

Conclusion of Japan-U.S. Framework Talks in the insurance sector.

30 June 1994:

Inauguration of Murayama Cabinet.

10 - 26 June 1994:

Their Majesties the Emperor and Empress of Japan visit the United States, the first State Guests of the United States after the inauguration of President Clinton. At the Welcoming Ceremony at the White House on the 13th, the Emperor refers to the "deplorable rupture brought about by war," and states his earnest hope that "the Pacific will become a true ocean of peace."

19 November 1993:

Prime Minister Hosokawa meets with President Clinton in Seattle during a visit to the United States to attend the APEC Informal Leaders Meeting.

6 August 1993:

Inauguration of Hosokawa Cabinet.

6 - 10 July 1993:

President Clinton attends G-7 Summit in Tokyo and meets with Prime Minister Miyazawa on 6 July. On the 7th, during a speech at Waseda University, the President announces a new comprehensive American policy agenda for Asia, calling for a New Pacific Community and proposing a meeting of Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) leaders. On the 9th, Prime Minister Miyazawa and President Clinton announce the establishment of the Japan-United States Framework for a New Economic Partnership.

20 January 1993:

Inauguration of President Clinton.

7 - 10 January 1992:

President Bush arrives in Japan with Secretary of Commerce Mosbacher and Treasury Secretary Brady. Prime Minister Miyazawa and President Bush meet on the 9th and announce the Tokyo Declaration on the Japan-U.S. Global Partnership and an Action Plan for expansion of Japan's imports of U.S.-made auto parts to US$19 billion by 1994.

7 December 1991:

President Bush speaks in Oahu, Hawaii at the Pearl Harbor Memorial Ceremony for fallen soldiers. He calls on all to move beyond rancor over the past and refers to the unfair detention of Japanese-Americans during the war.

5 November 1991:

Inauguration of Miyazawa Cabinet.

30 October - 1 November 1991:

All parties involved in the Middle East conflict meet under one roof for the Middle East Peace Conference in Madrid.

10 July 1991:

Prime Minister Kaifu visits the United States and meets with President Bush on 11 July in Kennebunkport, Maine. They agree on coordination of assistance for the Soviet Union. President Bush stresses that Japan should, rather than restricting imports of agricultural products, apply tariffs.

11 June 1991:

Conclusion of the new Japan-U.S. Semiconductor Arrangement.

3 - 6 April 1991:

Prime Minister Kaifu visits the U.S. and meets with President Bush in Newport Beach, California. Prime Minister Kaifu affirms Japan's desire to cooperate in establishing a new world order. President Bush officially calls for opening of Japan's rice market.

8 March 1991:

Gulf War ends in a cease-fire.

17 January 1991:

Multinational forces deployed in the Persian Gulf region begin their operation against Iraqi forces in accordance with a plan named "Desert Storm." Prime Minister Kaifu expresses Japan's "firm support" for the multinational forces.

2 August 1990:

The Gulf Crisis begins as Iraqi forces invade Kuwait and occupy all of its territory. On the same day, an emergency meeting of the U.N. Security Council censures Iraq and issues a resolution calling for immediate and unconditional withdrawal.

25-28 June 1990:

The fifth meeting of the Structural Impediments Initiative (SII) Talks is held in Tokyo and concludes with the issuing of a final report. Japan announces it will undertake public investments worth 430 trillion yen over a ten-year period starting in FY1991. Japan also announces its intention to improve its distribution and business practices.

2 - 4 March 1990:

Prime Minister Kaifu and Foreign Minister Nakayama visit the U.S. They meet with President Bush and Secretary of State Baker in Palm Springs, California.

9 November 1989:

The Berlin Wall comes down.

4 - 5 September 1989:

First SII meeting (in Tokyo). Both sides agree to hold consultations on establishment of a joint program to reduce Japan's trade imbalance with the United States.

30 August - 4 September 1989:

Prime Minister Kaifu visits the U.S. and meets with President Bush on 1 September. The U.S. Government stresses the need for results in the SII talks. On the same day, Foreign Minister Nakayama meets with Secretary of State Baker. Agreement is reached on stepping up consultations with a view to raising the share paid by Japan of expenses incurred by U.S. military forces stationed in Japan.

10 August 1989:

Inauguration of Kaifu Cabinet.

3 June 1989:

Inauguration of Uno Cabinet.

28 April 1989:

Japanese and U.S. Governments decide to jointly develop the FS-X support fighter.

24 February 1989:

The Funeral Ceremony of His late Majesty Emperor Showa. U.S. President Bush attends, along with 54 other Heads of State. Representatives and delegates from 164 countries and 28 international organizations are also present.

20 January 1989:

Inauguration of President Bush.

12 - 20 January 1988:

Prime Minister Takeshita visits the U.S. and Canada and meets with President Reagan on 13 January. Both leaders agree on establishing mechanisms to intervene in capital markets to prevent the devaluation of the dollar. Prime Minister Takeshita promises to open the market for large-scale projects in Japan's construction market. The U.S. demands liberalization of imports of American agricultural products, particularly beef and citrus fruits.

6 November 1987:

Inauguration of Takeshita Cabinet.

26-27 October 1987:

Prime Minister Nakasone visits the United States.

6 June 1987:

Prime Minister Nakasone attends G-7 Summit in Venice, Italy, providing an opportunity to meet with U.S. President Reagan on the 8th. The President announces partial relaxation of semiconductor-related sanctions against Japan, lifting 17% (equivalent to US$51 million) of the total amount of the sanctions.

3 July 1986:

Japan-U.S. semiconductor negotiations achieve initial agreement in Washington. Included is agreement to establish a system to monitor prices of products shipped abroad, including products to third countries, and to facilitate U.S. semiconductor manufacturers' entry into the Japanese market.

2 May 1986:

President Reagan arrives in Japan to attend G-7 Summit in Tokyo.

12 - 15 April 1986:

Prime Minister Nakasone visits U.S., accompanied by Foreign Minister Abe. During their first meeting with President Reagan on the 13th at Camp David, the President requests that recommendations contained in the Maekawa Report be followed. The Prime Minister announces his determination to ensure that Japan's economy becomes import-oriented. Also on the 13th, Foreign Minister Abe and Secretary of State Schwartz confer in Washington, and agree to create opportunities for dialogue on economic structural reform. The President and Prime Minister meet a second time on the 14th.

22 September 1985:

Finance ministers and central bank governors of Japan, the United States, France, West Germany and the United Kingdom countries meet in New York and adopt the Plaza Accord, calling for reductions in trade and economic imbalances among major industrialized countries, particularly Japan and the United States. Decisions are reached on setting appropriate exchange rates (i.e., having the yen rise in value vis-a-vis the dollar), and on the need for coordination of macroeconomic policies.

11 March 1985:

Mikhail Gorbachev appointed General Secretary of the Communist Party of the Soviet Union.

1 - 5 January 1985:

Prime Minister Nakasone visits the U.S. and meets with President Reagan in Los Angeles on 2 and 3 January. The Prime Minister gives full support to the President's efforts to achieve positive results in the United States-Soviet Union strategic arms reduction talks. The President requests that Japan lower its tariffs on wood products. Foreign Minister Abe and Secretary of State Schwartz agree to maintain close contact with each other, in order to coordinate efforts in resolving Japan-U.S. trade issues.

6 November 1984:

Re-election of President Reagan.

17 - 21 January 1983:

Prime Minister Nakasone visits the United States, and meets with President Reagan on 19 January. The two leaders issue a joint declaration affirming the relationship as allies between the two countries.

14 January 1983:

The comprehensive position of the Japanese Government regarding the issue of transfer to the U.S. of "military technologies," is approved by the Cabinet. The Government announces: (1) such transfer of "military technologies" will not be subject to the Three Principles on Arms Export; (2) the implementation of such transfer will be made within the framework of the relevant provisions of the MDA Agreement; and (3) the Japanese Government will continue to maintain, basically, the Three Principles.

27 November 1982:

Inauguration of Nakasone Cabinet.

4 - 10 May 1981:

Prime Minister Suzuki, accompanied by Foreign Minister Ito, visits the United States to attend bilateral meetings with leaders of the U.S. and Canada. On 6 May, Prime Minister Suzuki meets with leaders of the American business community -- there is unanimous agreement on the need to maintain free trade. In Washington on 8 May, Prime Minister Suzuki and President Reagan conclude their meetings with a joint declaration affirming the relationship as allies between the two countries, and stating their agreement on Japan's share of the burden of its defense, and that Japan will play a role also in the defence.

1 May 1981:

United States Trade Representative Block and Minister of International Trade and Industry Tanaka meet. They agree on the need for voluntary export restrictions on Japanese cars exported to the United States, and establish an export limit of approximately 1.68 million vehicles over a three-year period starting in FY1981.

20 January 1981:

Inauguration of President Reagan.

17 July 1980:

Inauguration of Suzuki Cabinet.

12 June 1980:

Prime Minister Ohira passes away in office during House of Councilors elections, and is replaced by Mr. Ito on 16 June.

30 April - 1 May:

Prime Minister and Mrs. Ohira visit the United States, Mexico and Canada. The Prime Minister meets President Carter on 1 May in Washington.

27 December 1979:

Soviet military forces advance into Afghanistan.

14 December 1979:

First meeting of the Japan-U.S. Eminent Persons Group.

16 November 1979:

Inauguration of the Japan-U.S. Eminent Persons Group.

24 - 29 June 1979:

President Carter arrives in Japan on the 24th for a state visit that lasts until 27 June. (He is accompanied by Secretary of State Vance, Secretary of the Treasury Blumenthal, and Secretary of Energy Schlesinger. President Carter meets with Prime Minister Ohira on 25 and 26 June, and remains in Japan until 29 June for the fifth G-7 Summit, held in Tokyo at the State Guest House. Leaders adopt the Tokyo Declaration calling for targets to be set by individual countries to control their imports of petroleum products and early implementation of the Tokyo Round of talks.

30 April - 6 May 1979:

Prime Minister Ohira visits the United States, accompanied by Foreign Minister Sonoda and Mr. Yasukawa, a government official handling the foreign trade. Discussions in Washington between the Prime Minister and President center on eliminating trade friction. The "Productive Partnership" between the two countries is extolled. On 2 May, the two leaders issue a joint declaration calling for elimination of the root causes of trade friction between the two countries, expansion of domestic demand in Japan, further opening of Japan's markets, promotion of U.S. exports and restraints on American oil imports. Also in Washington, Foreign Minister Sonoda and Secretary of Energy Schlesinger sign the Agreement on energy field).

7 December 1978:

Inauguration of first Ohira Cabinet.

19 - 27 March 1977:

Prime Minister Fukuda departs for the United States to confer with President Carter. On 22 March, two leaders issue a joint declaration affirming the importance of cooperation for the stability of Asia-Pacific.

20 January 1977:

Inauguration of President Carter.

24 December 1976:

Inauguration of Fukuda Cabinet.

4 July 1976:

United States celebrates its 200th Anniversary as a nation.

15 November 1975:

The first G-7 Summit Meeting begins, in Rambouillet.

21 October 1975:

President Ford signs the United States-Japan Amity Law.

30 September - 14 October 1975:

Their Majesties the Emperor and Empress of Japan visit the United States.

30 April 1975:

End of Vietnam War.

7 November 1977:

Re-election of President Nixon.

9 December 1974:

Inauguration of Miki Cabinet.

18 - 20 November 1974:

President Ford visits Japan. He is the first U.S. President in office to meet with both His Majesty the Emperor and a Prime Minister of Japan (at this time, Prime Minister Tanaka). The President and Prime Minister affirm the Japan-U.S. cooperative relationship. On the 20th, both Governments issue a Joint Summit Statement stressing that the Japan-U.S. cooperative relationship is of vital and lasting importance to Asian security.

9 August 1974:

Vice-President Ford (of the Republican Party) sworn in as 38th President of the United States.

7 July 1972:

Inauguration of first Tanaka Cabinet.

12 May 1972:

Vice-President Agnew arrives in Japan to attend the Okinawa Reversion Ceremony as representative of President Nixon. On May 15, Okinawa is returned to Japan and becomes one of Japan's prefectures, after a period of 27 years. Secretary of State Rogers announces that Okinawa is free of all nuclear weapons.

6 January 1972:

Prime Minister Sato visits the United States and meets with President Nixon in Sacramento, California. The following day the two leaders issue a joint statement to the effect that Okinawa will be returned to Japan on 15 May 1972.

3 January 1972:

Compromise reached in Japan-U.S. textile negotiations in Washington.

26 - 27 September 1971:

Their Majesties the Emperor and Empress of Japan depart for a goodwill visit to Europe. President Nixon meets with His Majesty the Emperor in Anchorage, Alaska.

15 August 1971:

In a statement broadcast throughout the United States, President Nixon announces a New Economic Program, indicating the need to reform the International Monetary Fund (IMF) and to reorganize the system determining parity of the dollar with other major currencies. Gold-dollar transactions are temporarily stopped, and an interim surcharge is levied on imports. In Japan, these measures become known as the "Nixon Shock."

15 July 1971:

President Nixon announces his intention to visit China.

18 - 27 October 1970:

Prime Minister Sato visits the United States. On the 21st, he speaks at the United Nations, the first Japanese Prime Minister to do so. On the 24th, he confers in Washington with President Nixon on textiles, Okinawa, and problems in Indochina.

22 June 1970:

The Japan-U.S. Security Treaty is renewed automatically. The fixed ten-year expiration period is dropped.

17 - 21 November 1969:

Prime Minister Sato departs for Washington for negotiations on Okinawa's reversion to Japan. A joint Japan-U.S. statement is issued on the 21st, indicating agreement on Okinawa's return to Japan as an integral part of the country in 1972, free of nuclear weapons.

20 January 1969:

Inauguration of President Nixon.

26 June 1968:

Ogasawara Islands restored to Japan.

14 - 15 November 1967:

Prime Minister Sato meets with President Johnson in Washington. On the 15th, they issue a joint declaration stating that the Ogasawara Islands will be restored to Japan within one year.

20 January 1965:

Inauguration of President Johnson.

9 November 1964:

Inauguration of Sato Cabinet.

3 November 1964:

Lyndon Johnson, is re-elected President.

2 August 1964:

Tonkin Gulf Incident: a U.S. destroyer opens fire on a North Vietnamese motor torpedo boat.

28 April 1964:

Japan officially becomes an OECD member.

22 - 24 November 1963:

President Kennedy assassinated in Dallas, Texas. Vice-President Johnson sworn in as President. Prime Minister Ikeda arrives in the U.S. on the 24th, to attend the funeral the following day.

20 - 22 June 1961:

Prime Minister Ikeda and President Kennedy hold their first meeting in Washington. On the 22nd, both leaders emphasize that Japan is a member of the group of free nations, and issue a joint declaration extolling the "Equal Partnership," indicating both countries' intention to develop new cooperative mechanisms. Both parties agree to establish a Japan-U.S. Joint Committee on Trade and Economy, and exchange signed documents.

20 January 1961:

Inauguration of President Kennedy. The President describes his vision of a "New Frontier."

27 September 1960:

Their Imperial Highnesses the Crown Prince and Princess of Japan confer with President Eisenhower at the White House.

19 July 1960:

Inauguration of Ikeda Cabinet.

16 January 1960:

Plenipotentiary mission for the new U.S.-Japan Treaty headed by Prime Minister Kishi.

16 - 19 June 1957:

Prime Minister Kishi visits the United States, and meets with President Eisenhower on the 19th.

25 February 1957:

Inauguration of Kishi Cabinet.

23 December 1956:

Inauguration of Ishibashi Cabinet.

12 - 18 December 1956:

On 12 December, the U.N. Security Council decides unanimously to admit Japan into the United Nations. On the 18th, the U.N. General Assembly gives its unanimous approval, and Japan thus becomes the United Nation's 80th member.

6 November 1956:

Re-election of President Eisenhower.

10 December 1954:

Inauguration of Hatoyama Cabinet.

9 - 10 November 1954:

Prime Minister Yoshida meets with President Eisenhower and Secretary of State Dulles. Discussion centers on enhancing assistance for Japan's trade and economy. On the 10th, the President and Prime Minister issue a joint declaration stating their Government's intention to cooperate in maintaining and strengthening peace and prosperity in Asia. The Declaration also expresses regret for the Lucky Dragon Incident near Bikini Island.

24 - 25 December 1953:

On 24 December, Japan and the U.S. sign an agreement on restoration of the Amami Islands to Japan. The islands are restored the following day.

2 April 1953:

Signing of the Japan-U.S. Treaty of Friendship Commerce and Navigation. (The treaty is promulgated on 28 October, and comes into effect on 30 October for a period of ten years.) Treaty goals are to promote close economic and cultural ties between the peoples of both countries, to foster commercial relations, and to facilitate investment that would be advantageous to both countries.

20 January 1953:

Inauguration of President Eisenhower.

4 September 1951:

The San Francisco Peace Treaty Conference commences, attended by 52 countries. On the first day, President Truman gives an address and stresses the following points: (1) peace with Japan will bring further reconciliation and peace; (2) the most important thing is to ensure that Japan never resorts to aggression but rather opts for protection, while at the same time refraining from disturbing the security of other countries; (3) in the event that Japan establishes its own self-defense force, the force should be linked integrally to the forces of other countries. President Truman and Prime Minister Yoshida sign the San Francisco Peace Treaty. (The Treaty is signed by 49 countries; the Soviet Union, Poland and Czechoslovakia do not sign; China was not invited to the Conference). President Truman and Prime Minister Yoshida also sign the Japan-United States Security Treaty.

25 June 1950:

Outbreak of Korean War (which lasts until July 1953).

4 April 1949:

North Atlantic Treaty signed, establishing NATO.

15 October 1948:

Inauguration of second Yoshida Cabinet.

20 January 1949:

Inauguration of President Truman

3 April 1948:

The United States announces foreign assistance plans (the Marshall Plan).

1 April 1948:

The Soviet Union cuts land routes to Berlin, beginning to seal off the city.

10 March 1948:

Inauguration of Ashida Cabinet.

24 May 1947:

Inauguration of Katayama Cabinet.

12 March 1947:

While requesting that Congress authorize assistance for Greece and Turkey, President Truman announces his "Truman Doctrine." The Doctrine defines the world in bi-polar terms, with freedom-loving countries standing in opposition to those under dictatorship. The President stresses the need to assist peoples espousing freedom. This marks a changing point in American diplomacy.

22 May 1946:

Inauguration of first Yoshida Cabinet.

9 October 1945:

Inauguration of Shidehara Cabinet.

2 September 1945:

Foreign Minister Shigemitsu, representing the Japanese Government, and General Umezu, representing Imperial Headquarters, sign the Instrument of Surrender aboard the USS Missouri. This act formalizes Japan's surrender.

30 August 1945:

General MacArthur, Supreme Commander of the Allied Powers, arrives in Atsugi, near Tokyo.

15 August 1945:

Japan surrenders.


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