Japan-Brunei Relations

October 23, 2019
(Photo1: Cabinet Public Relations Office) (Photo: Cabinet Public Relations Office)
(Photo2: Cabinet Public Relations Office) (Photo: Cabinet Public Relations Office)

On October 23, commencing at around 8:45 a.m. for approximately 10 minutes, Mr. Shinzo Abe, Prime Minister of Japan, held a summit meeting with His Majesty Sultan Haji Hassanal Bolkiah of Brunei Darussalam. The overview of the meeting is as follows. The meeting was also attended by Mr. OKADA Naoki, Deputy Chief Cabinet Secretary, Mr. HAYASHI Hajime, Assistant Chief Cabinet Secretary, and Mr. HASEGAWA Eiichi, Special Advisor to the Prime Minister and Cabinet Public Relations Secretary from the Japanese side, and by HRH Prince Abdul Mateen, Dato Dr. AMIN Liu, Minister at the Prime Minister’s Office and Minister of Finance and Economy II, Dato Seri Setia Haji ERYWAN bin Pehin Datu Pekerma Jaya Haji Mohd Yusof, Minister of Foreign Affairs II and others from the Brunei side.

1. Opening Remarks

Prime Minister Abe welcomed the first visit in six years to Japan by His Majesty Sultan Haji Hassanal Bolkiah and stated, “It is an honor to be able to welcome you to the Enthronement Ceremony of the Reiwa Era, following on from your previous attendance at the Enthronement Ceremony at the start of the Heisei Era,” and “the tradition of exchange between the Imperial Family and the Royal House of Brunei provides the cornerstone to our bilateral relations.”
In response, His Majesty Sultan Haji Hassanal Bolkiah congratulated on the Emperor’s accession to the Throne, and expressed his complement for the outstanding performance by the Japanese team at Rugby World Cup 2019 as well as his wish for success in hosting Tokyo Olympic and Paralympic Games in 2020. Furthermore, His Majesty Sultan Haji Hassanal Bolkiah conveyed his heartfelt condolences for damage wrought by Typhoon Hagibis.

2. Bilateral Relations

His Majesty Sultan Haji Hassanal Bolkiah announced that Brunei had decided to lift the import restrictions on Japanese food products that have been in place since the Great East Japan Earthquake. In response, Prime Minister Abe stated, “I sincerely welcome the decision made by the Government of Brunei.” Prime Minister Abe also stated “the early conclusion of a Japan-Brunei technical cooperation agreement will be important for economic diversification and I hope for Your Majesty’s leadership in this regard,” and “I welcome advances in defense exchanges and hope that there will be further developments in this area in the future.”
His Majesty Sultan Haji Hassanal Bolkiah echoed the importance of continued bilateral cooperation in various fields.

3. Regional Affairs

Both leaders confirmed that they would expand cooperation in addressing the regional issues. In addition, Prime Minister Abe requested understanding and cooperation towards the early resolution of the abductions issue.

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