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Speeches and Statements by Prime Minister Junichiro Koizumi

Joint Statement on the occasion of the Signing of the Agreement between
Japan and the United Mexican States for
the Strengthening of the Economic Partnership

1.We, the Prime Minister of Japan, Junichiro Koizumi, and the President of the United Mexican States, Vicente Fox Quesada, recalling more than 400 years of friendship between our two peoples, recognize that Japan and Mexico have developed an enduring cooperative relationship in the political, economic and cultural areas. Building on this long-standing relationship, Japan and Mexico are determined to fulfill the shared responsibility to contribute to the stability, security and prosperity of our two nations and the international community.
2.In October 2003, on the occasion of the state visit to Japan of President Vicente Fox Quesada of Mexico, we declared our determination to construct a "Strategic Partnership across the Pacific in the New Millennium" in order to open a promising horizon for the bilateral relationship in this age of globalization. The Agreement between Japan and the United Mexican States for the Strengthening of the Economic Partnership is a significant step forward in promoting our strategic partnership. Today, by signing the Agreement, we have elevated our bilateral economic relationship into a new dimension and laid down a firm basis for our strategic partnership.
3.This Agreement will encourage free cross-border flow of goods, persons, services and capital between Japan and Mexico. Aiming to promote a comprehensive economic partnership, it also includes competition policy, improvement of the business environment, and bilateral cooperation in fields of mutual interest, such as trade and investment promotion, supporting industries, small and medium enterprises, science and technology, technical and vocational education and training, intellectual property, agriculture, tourism, and environment. We hope that, by concluding this Agreement, Japan and Mexico will be able to make the most of their economic complementarity and to further promote the development of their respective economies, through creating a large-scale harmonized market for both countries and accelerating the structural reforms.
4.We share the conviction that enhanced economic linkages between our nations will foster existing and new business opportunities, including trade and investment opportunities for small and medium enterprises of both countries. We also believe that this Agreement will create a clearly established and secured trade and investment framework and ensure a predictable commercial environment for further expansion of trade and investment between our nations. We strongly hope that this Agreement will be fully utilized by the private sectors of both countries to realize the enormous potential of the bilateral trade and investment relationship.
5.We welcome the fact that business circles have already begun to explore business opportunities with enthusiasm, expecting to benefit from the advantages that will be provided by this Agreement. We are encouraged by a series of ongoing and future cooperative activities between our private sectors and government entities, including a joint seminar and similar events to be held in Tokyo and Mexico City this fall, focusing on the significant role of this Agreement in opening up trade and investment opportunities.
6.We recognize the importance of improving the business environment of both countries in order to promote bilateral trade and investment and express the will of our Governments to address issues related to the improvement of the business environment through the consultation mechanisms established under the Agreement. In particular, we welcome the creation of the Committee for the Improvement of the Business Environment, which is expected to meet soon after entry into force of the Agreement.
7.We are aware of the paramount role that supporting industries and small and medium enterprises can play to further expand bilateral trade and investment. Our Governments are committed to encourage greater business ties for the benefit of both countries through bilateral cooperation activities aimed at enhancing the competitiveness of small and medium enterprises and strengthening our supporting industries, while ensuring their effective participation in the opportunities and benefits of this Agreement.
8.In order to raise the productivity and competitiveness of private enterprises of both countries, we also acknowledge the need for promoting skills development in both workforces. Bilateral cooperation under the Agreement is expected to be instrumental to promote the application of new technologies to support the development of training systems.
9.We recognize the growing importance of intellectual property as a factor of economic competitiveness in the knowledge-based economy, and of intellectual property protection in this new environment. In this regard, we affirm that our Governments take necessary actions to protect the intellectual property through various aspects referred to in the Agreement and that each Government complies with the multilateral conventions concerning intellectual property rights to which it is a party. We also affirm that necessary actions are taken by both Governments to eradicate counterfeit products and pirated goods infringing intellectual property rights and that the Protocol Relating to the Madrid Agreement Concerning the International Registration of Marks contributes to effective and global protection of trademarks. Mexico reaffirms its willingness to undertake every effort to ratify the Protocol.
10.Tourism is an important industry for the two economies and contributes to the enhancement of mutual understanding and the flourishing of innovative business ideas. We welcome the tourism cooperation covered by the Agreement that will promote travel between Japan and Mexico. For the purpose of enhancing the capacity of Mexico's tourism industry to attract more Japanese tourists, the Government of Japan plans to invite young leaders of Mexican tourism industry.
11.In view of the benefit of cooperation in the field of environment, we welcome the start of our cooperative activities to promote the Clean Development Mechanism (CDM) projects, including efforts to identify prospective CDM projects in Mexico and enhanced cooperation between governmental entities of both countries.
12.In light of the increasing application of anti-dumping measures in the world, we affirm the importance to continue the cooperation between our two nations in the WTO negotiations, aimed at clarifying and improving disciplines under the Agreement on Implementation of Article VI of the GATT 1994 (the Anti-dumping Agreement).
13.We share the view that enhanced economic ties between Japan and Mexico will promote Japan's economic relationship with Latin America, and Mexico's economic relationship with Asia, thereby giving a fresh impetus to trade and investment flows across the Pacific. We are convinced that our two nations will contribute together to the prosperity of the Asia-Pacific region by invigorating economic exchanges.
14.We are determined to make utmost efforts for early entry into force of this Agreement by completing necessary legal procedures, including the approval of our respective legislative bodies, so that the peoples of both countries can enjoy the benefit of this Agreement as early as possible.
15.With all these hope and convictions in mind, we, representing the Governments and peoples of both Japan and the United Mexican States, now warmly celebrate the signing of this Agreement which will strengthen the economic partnership of both countries, and open a new era in the Japan-Mexico relationship.

Mexico City, September 17, 2004

Junichiro Koizumi
Prime Minister of
Vicente Fox Quesada
President of
the United Mexican States