Canada – Japan foreign ministers expand Indo-Pacific cooperation

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Minister of Foreign Affairs, Marc Garneau, (L) and Japan’s Minister for Foreign Affairs, Motegi Toshimitsu

OTTAWA, Canada –  Marc Garneau, minister of foreign affairs, Monday met with Motegi Toshimitsu, Japan’s minister for foreign affairs, on the margins of the G7 foreign and development ministers’ meeting, in London, United Kingdom.

“The two ministers underlined the long-standing relationship of their countries, which is underpinned by a rich history of cooperation and a shared desire to promote greater peace and prosperity in the Indo-Pacific region. They highlighted the many shared values, including support for the rules-based international order and the commitment to maintaining a free and open Indo-Pacific region, as expressed by prime minister Justin Trudeau and Japan’s then-prime minister, Abe Shinzo, in April 2019 and reaffirmed by prime minister Trudeau and Japan’s current prime minister, Suga Yoshihide, in February 2021,” said, Global Affairs Canada.

Building on the leaders’ shared vision, the ministers agreed on six areas of bilateral cooperation that will benefit both countries and advance common interests in the Indo-Pacific region. These six areas are the rule of law, security cooperation, energy security, health, trade promotion, and the environment and climate change.

The two ministers underscored the importance of promoting peace and security in the region, including countering North Korea’s maritime sanctions evasion. Minister Garneau emphasized Canada’s commitment to regional security, noting that he and the Honourable Harjit S. Sajjan, minister of national Defence, recently announced the renewal of Operation NEON, Canada’s contribution to a coordinated multinational effort to support the implementation of United Nations Security Council sanctions imposed against North Korea.

The ministers exchanged views on other ongoing priorities, including relations with China, the military coup in Myanmar, cooperation on international trade, closer Canada-Japan collaboration on climate change, and the upcoming Tokyo Olympic & Paralympic Games. Minister Garneau also expressed gratitude for Japan’s endorsement of the Declaration Against Arbitrary Detention in State-to-State relations.

The two ministers expressed enthusiasm for working together bilaterally and multilateral forums, including through the G7, to uphold shared values, promote economic cooperation and trade, and defend a rules-based international order.

Minister of foreign affairs Garneau, said: “The Indo-Pacific region will continue to be a driving force for growth in the coming decades. Canada and Japan build on a strong and longstanding partnership to strengthen cooperation to advance common interests in the region and ensure it remains free and open.”

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