Japan-Philippines Relations

December 17, 2023
Prime Minister Kishida shakes hand with President Marcos (Photo: Cabinet Public Affairs Office)
Japan-Philippines Summit Meeting (Photo: Cabinet Public Affairs Office)

On December 17, commencing at 4:05 p.m. for approximately 25 minutes, Mr. KISHIDA Fumio, Prime Minister of Japan, held a Japan-Philippines Summit Meeting with H.E. Ferdinand R. Marcos, Jr., President of the Republic of the Philippines, who is visiting Japan to participate in the Commemorative Summit for the 50th Year of ASEAN-Japan Friendship and Cooperation, which was followed by a ceremony for the exchange of signed documents between the two countries. The overview of the meeting and ceremony is as follows.

The meeting and ceremony were attended on the Japanese side by Mr. SAITO Ken, Minister of Economy, Trade and Industry, Mr. MORIYA Hiroshi, Deputy Chief Cabinet Secretary, among others; and on the Philippines side by Hon. Ferdinand Martin G. Romualdez, Speaker of the House of Representatives, Hon. Enrique A. Manalo, Secretary for Foreign Affairs, Hon. Francisco P. Tiu Laurel Jr., Secretary of Agriculture, Hon. Maria Antonia Yulo-Loyzaga, Secretary of the Department of Environment and Natural Resources, Hon. Cheloy Velicaria-Garafil, Secretary of the Presidential Communications Office, among others.

1. Summit Meeting

(1) Introduction

Prime Minister Kishida expressed his gratitude for President Marcos’s visit to Japan and the warm welcome he received during his visit to the Philippines in November. Prime Minister Kishida mourned the victims of the earthquake and explosion in Mindanao on December 3, and extended his heartfelt sympathy to those wounded. Prime Minister Kishida also stated that, as the world is at a historical turning point, Japan places great importance on promoting cooperation with ASEAN, including the Philippines, to maintain and strengthen a free and open international order based on the rule of law and to ensure a world where human dignity is protected. Prime Minister Kishida expressed his hope that the Commemorative Summit would become an opportunity to pass on to the next generation the "trust" which Japan and ASEAN have built thus far, and to further strengthen the relations between Japan and ASEAN. In response, President Marcos expressed his appreciation for Japan's welcome on his visit as well as Japan’s assistance to the Philippines to date, and stated that he would like to work with Prime Minister Kishida to further develop Japan-Philippines relations.

(2) Bilateral Relations

  1. Prime Minister Kishida stated that Japan would steadily carry out the provision of coastal radar system through Official Security Assistance (OSA) and would like to further strengthen cooperation in maritime safety capacity building based on the Memorandum of Cooperation between the coast guards of the two countries that was signed on this occasion. President Marcos appreciated Japan’s assistance through the OSA. The two leaders concurred to continue coordination to reach an early conclusion of the negotiations of the Reciprocal Access Agreement (RAA) and to enhance cooperation between the coast guards of the two countries.
  2. Prime Minister Kishida stated that taking the opportunity of the Asia Zero Emission Community (AZEC) Leaders’ Meeting, he would like to strengthen cooperation in energy transition and decarbonization, as well as to continue to steadily promote infrastructure cooperation. In response, President Marcos stated that he would like to further promote cooperation with Japan in these areas as well.

(3) Responding to regional and international challenges

The two leaders also exchanged views on various regional and international issues, and confirmed that they would continue to work together.

2. Exchange of Documents Ceremony

Exchange of Notes (Photo: Cabinet Public Affairs Office)
Exchange of Notes (Photo: Cabinet Public Affairs Office)

After the summit meeting, in the presence of the two leaders, the following documents in relation to bilateral cooperation were exchanged.

  1. Memorandum of Cooperation between Japan Coast Guard and the Philippine Coast Guard
  2. Memorandum of Cooperation between the Ministry of the Environment of Japan and the Department of Environment and Natural Resources of the Republic of the Philippines in the Field of Environmental Protection (a person who exchanged the document on the Japanese side is Mr. ITO Shintaro, Minister of the Environment)

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