Countries & Regions

Prime Minister Shinzo Abe’s Visit to the State of Kuwait (August 26)

August 26, 2013
Japanese

  • Meeting with Prime Minister Sheikh Jaber
    (Photo: Cabinet Public Relations Office)
  • Meeting with Crown Prince Sheikh Nawaf
    (Photo: Cabinet Public Relations Office)
  • Meeting with the Speaker of the National Assembly
    (Photo: Cabinet Public Relations Office)

On Monday, August 26, Prime Minister Shinzo Abe visited the State of Kuwait. The major events, overview, and results of his visit are as follows:

1. Major Events

(1) Welcoming Ceremony Hosted by H.E. Sheikh Jaber Mubarak Al-Hamad Al-Sabah, Prime Minister of the State of Kuwait and Talks
(2) Meeting with H.H. Sheikh Nawaf Al-Ahmad Al-Jaber Al-Sabah, acting Amir and Crown Prince of the State of Kuwait
(3) Meeting with H.E. Mr. Al-Ghanim, Speaker of Kuwait National Assembly
(4) Opening Remarks at Economic Seminar Hosted by the Kuwait Chamber of Commerce & Industry
(5) Tour of the Kuwait Islamic Heritage Museum
(6) Meeting, Signing Ceremony, and Dinner with Prime Minister Jaber

2. Overview and Results

(1) Welcoming Ceremony Hosted by H.E. Sheikh Jaber Mubarak Al-Hamad Al-Sabah, Prime Minister of the State of Kuwait and Talks

Prime Minister Abe attended a welcoming ceremony hosted by Prime Minister Sheikh Jaber at Bayan Palace. During the talks following the ceremony, the two sides exchanged views concerning bilateral relations and the regional situation.

(2) Meeting with H.H. Sheikh Nawaf Al-Ahmad Al-Jaber Al-Sabah, acting Amir and Crown Prince of the State of Kuwait

Prime Minister Abe met with H.H. Sheikh Nawaf Al-Ahmad Al-Jaber Al-Sabah, acting Amir and Crown Prince of the State of Kuwait at Bayan Palace for approximately 45 minutes. The two sides shared the view that they would further develop the multi-layered relations that were affirmed during Prime Minister Abe’s visit to Kuwait in 2007, cooperate in many fields including not only energy, but also political affairs, security, economic issues, education, agriculture and health, and construct a “comprehensive partnership.” After the meeting, Prime Minister Abe introduced Crown Prince Sheikh Nawaf to the top leaders of private sector corporations, and discussions took place.

(3) Meeting with H.E. Mr. Al-Ghanim, Speaker of Kuwait National Assembly

Prime Minister Abe held talks with H.E. Mr. Marzouq Ali Al-Ghanim, Speaker of Kuwait National Assembly at the Kuwait National Assembly Building. Prime Minister Abe commented that Kuwait is commemorating the 50th anniversary of the establishment of its National Assembly this year, and conveyed his appreciation for the kind assistance that Kuwait provided in the aftermath of the Great East Japan Earthquake. Mr. Ghanim responded that providing assistance after an earthquake disaster is only natural, and he noted that Kuwait would never forget the help that Japan provided in the wake of the Gulf War. The two sides expressed their hopes for the expansion of Japanese corporations into Kuwait, and affirmed the importance of cooperation in both the public and private sectors with regard to the national redevelopment of Kuwait. Furthermore, the two sides shared the view that their national assemblies would move ahead with exchanges, including ones via their parliamentary friendship associations.

(4) Opening Remarks at Business Seminar Hosted by the Kuwait Chamber of Commerce & Industry

Prime Minister Abe attended an economic forum hosted by the Kuwait Chamber of Commerce & Industry, at which he delivered the opening remarks. Prime Minister Abe stated that the public and private sectors of Japan, which has assisted developing Kuwait’s basic infrastructure, intend to contribute to the national redevelopment of Kuwait. He also commented that he hopes that the economic relationship between Japan and Kuwait will be further advanced through mutual exchanges between the public and private sectors of the two countries. Furthermore, Prime Minister Abe expressed his appreciation for Kuwait’s support in the aftermath of the earthquake disaster in Japan, and he mentioned that Kuwait’s national emblem is drawn on new train cars of the Sanriku Railway, which were procured with Kuwait’s assistance.

(5) Tour of the Kuwait Islamic Heritage Museum

Prime Minister Abe toured the Kuwait Islamic Heritage Museum, and was greeted by Sheikha Hussah Sabah Al-Salem Al-Sabah, who is the museum’s director general. Prime Minister Abe listened to her explanation about the museum, and viewed exhibitions displaying manuscripts of the Quran and Islamic art.

(6) Meeting, Signing Ceremony, and Dinner with Prime Minister Sheikh Jaber

A. At the Beginning

Prime Minister Abe held a meeting with Prime Minister Sheikh Jaber for approximately one hour. The two sides shared the view that they would further develop the multi-layered relations that were affirmed during Prime Minister Abe’s visit to Kuwait in 2007, cooperate in many fields including not only energy, but also politics, security, economics, education, agriculture, and health, and construct a “comprehensive partnership.”

B. Regional Situation

Both sides shared their positions regarding the situation in the Middle East region in particular Syria, Iran, Iraq, and Middle East peace, and exchanged views on a wide range of topics.

C. Bilateral Relations

(i) “Collaboration”: Contribution for Stability in the Middle East Region

— Prime Minister Abe expressed his intention that Japan would play more politically active roles for the stability in the Middle East region, and in this regard, both parties shared the view that a Meeting of the Joint Committee between the Government of Japan and the Government of the State of Kuwait would be held as soon as possible, that policy consultations between the Foreign Ministries of the two countries would be convened, and that high-level security dialogues between the Foreign and Defense Ministries of the two countries would be newly set up.

(ii) “Coexistence and Co-prosperity”: Expansion and Deepening of Economic Relations

— Both parties shared the view that the public and private sectors of Japan, which have comparative advantage in both technologies and maintenance and management skills, would cooperate in relation to large-scale infrastructure development based on Kuwait’s Second Five-Year Plan. They also affirmed to collaborate with regard to infrastructure development in the fields of water, energy, and transportation.
— Both parties welcomed cooperation in various fields, exchanges and collaboration for medical care, agriculture, nuclear safety and disaster management, education, and collaborations in the field of human resource development.

(iii) “Tolerance and Harmony”: Strengthening Cultural and Human Exchanges

— Both parties welcomed the progress of bilateral cooperation in the field of education, and the signing of the Memorandum of Cooperation between the Ministry of Education, Culture, Sports, Science and Technology of Japan and the Ministry of Higher Education of Kuwait.
— Prime Minister Abe stated that, taking the request from the Kuwaiti side into account, Japan is considering mutual visa exemption for diplomatic or official passport holders’ entrance for their diplomatic or official visits or for short visits. The Kuwaiti side welcomed this.

D. Other Issues

Since Kuwait will chair the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) next year, both parties shared the view that they should hold ministerial-level strategic dialogues between Japan and the GCC nations as early as possible and also reconfirmed the importance of resuming negotiations on the Japan-GCC Free Trade Agreement.

* After the end of the bilateral talks, discussions took place between Prime Minister Abe and the relevant businessman of the private sector accompanying him during his visit to Kuwait, and opinions were exchanged for approximately 30 minutes.

E. Signing Ceremony

Following the talks, Prime Minister Abe and Prime Minister Jaber attended the signing ceremony of the following two documents.

(i) Memorandum of Cooperation in the fields of Higher Education and Scientific Research between the Ministry of Education, Culture, Sports, Science and Technology of Japan and the Ministry of Higher Education of Kuwait

(ii) Memorandum of Cooperation for the Policy Dialogue on the National Development of Kuwait between the Minister of Foreign Affairs, Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry, and Ministry of Land, Infrastructure, Transport and Tourism of Japan and the Supreme Council for Planning and Development of Kuwait

F. Dinner Hosted by Prime Minister Sheikh Jaber

At the dinner hosted by Prime Minister Sheikh Jaber, Prime Minister Abe introduced Prime Minister Sheikh Jaber to Japanese fruits (pears, mandarin oranges, muscats, piones and Yubari melon etc) and presented them as his gifts. These fruits were served at the dinner and were well-received by the participants.

(END)


* The foregoing is a provisional translation. The date indicated above denotes the date of issue of the original in Japanese.