Japan-US Summit Meeting (Summary)

October 2003

On 17 October, Prime Minister Junichiro Koizumi hosted a dinner at the Japanese-style annex of the State Guesthouse for President George W. Bush of the United States of America and the First Lady Mrs. Laura Welch Bush on their stopover in Japan. The following is an overview of the dialogue between the two leaders on the occasion.

1. Japan-US Relations

The concept of the "Japan-US Alliance in the global context" was present throughout the discussion. The two leaders held discussions from the perspective that the alliance between Japan and the US is very strong and has been contributing to world peace. They confirmed that Japan and the United States would closely cooperate with each other in tackling various issues such as reconstruction of Iraq and North Korea's nuclear issues, while maintaining cooperation with other countries in the world.

2. Reconstruction of Iraq, Fight against Terrorism

(1) President Bush stated that the role Japan played in realizing a unanimous adoption of the United Nations Security Council Resolution 1511 was commendable. He also expressed his gratitude for Japan's assistance for Iraq, which was announced on 15 October, noting that both the content and the timing of the announcement were important.

(2) Prime Minister Koizumi pointed out the importance of simultaneously promoting the Japan-US alliance and international cooperation. He also welcomed the efforts by the United States to solidify the basis of international cooperation. The Prime Minister also expressed his respect for US leadership under the current circumstances in Iraq.

(3) Furthermore, on provision of assistance to Iraq, Prime Minister Koizumi stated that Japan would fulfill its role in providing humanitarian and reconstruction assistance for the sake of Japan itself, for attaining stability in the region and for the world. Japan would do so based on its own decision from the standpoint of the "Japan-US Alliance in the global context." He also touched upon the establishment of the Law Concerning the Special Measures on Humanitarian and Reconstruction Assistance in Iraq and the extension of the Anti-Terrorism Special Measures Law. President Bush expressed his appreciation for the Prime Minister's leadership.

3. North Korea

(1) The two leaders agreed on the importance of continuing the close cooperation between Japan and the United States in order to advance the six-party talks and to seek a peaceful solution on the nuclear issues of North Korea.

(2) President Bush noted the importance of the abduction issue and stated that the United States would offer any help it could extend. In response, Prime Minister Koizumi expressed his gratitude for US's understanding and explained the Japanese position that it would exert its maximum effort to realize the return of the family members of the abductees.

4. United Nations

Prime Minister Koizumi states that the United States possessed the ideal, cause and goodwill to spread liberty and democracy, but that it needed to consider ways to further utilize the United Nations so that the US's intentions would be well understood by other countries. In response, President Bush expressed that while he agreed, there was a need, on the other hand, to reform the structure and other aspects of the United Nations.

5. Japan-US Security Arrangements

Prime Minister Koizumi stated that from the perspective of further strengthening the Japan-US relations, progress should be made in the realignment and reduction of US military facilities and areas in Okinawa. He pointed out the need to discuss security issues, including the issue of Okinawa, in detail at the working level. In response, President Bush stated that it was necessary to promote consultations between Japan and the United States on the various issues concerning Okinawa, as well as on missile defense.

6. Japan-US economy

(1) President Bush stated that he understood that the Japanese economy was picking up and that he supported the advancement of reforms under Prime Minister Koizumi's efforts so as to improve the Japanese economy. He also stated that the US economy also shows good signs of recovery and that US supported the "strong dollar" policy and recognized that the currency value should be decided by the market.

(2) In response, Prime Minister Koizumi stated that he welcomed the "strong dollar" policy and that while currency value should be decided in the market, excessive fluctuation in the market was not preferable.

(3) President Bush stated that he was concerned that a surge of protectionism may appear in the United States due to the high level of unemployment, but that he believed in free trade and would seek to promote it.

7. International Thermonuclear Experimental Reactor (ITER)

Prime Minister Koizumi asked President Bush for US support for Japan's aspirations for the ITER site. To this, President Bush noted that Ambassador Howard Baker has been making strong recommendations to President Bush regarding this matter and would make further considerations.

8. 2005 World Exposition in Aichi, Japan

Prime Minister Koizumi stated that US participation in the 2005 World Exposition in Aichi would be most welcomed. President Bush stated that efforts were being made to realize US participation and that he was considering the matter very positively.

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