Japan-Palau Summit Meeting (Summary)

June 4, 2024
[Provisional translation]

On June 4, commencing at 7:10 p.m. for approximately 1 hour and 35 minutes, Prime Minister KISHIDA Fumio held a Japan-Palau Summit Meeting and Working Dinner with H.E. Surangel S. WHIPPS, Jr, President of the Republic of Palau. The following is a summary of the exchange between the two leaders.
1. Introduction
Prime Minister Kishida welcomed President Whipps' visit to Japan prior to the 10th Pacific Islands Leaders' Meeting (PALM 10). Prime Minister Kishida stated that he was pleased to hold the summit meeting with President Whipps for the third time and that Japan would like to seamlessly strengthen the "kizuna" and "tokubetsu" (also in Palauan) relationship with Palau, which has been fostered over a long history of exchange. In response, President Whipps said that he was pleased to visit Japan and meet with Prime Minister Kishida again, and that he would like to work together with Japan in all aspects.
2. Bilateral Relations
The two leaders discussed ways to further strengthen bilateral relations. The two leaders concurred to review ways to strengthen the "tokubetsu" relationship between Japan and Palau in the occasion of this year marking the 30th anniversary of Palau's independence as well as the 30th anniversary of the establishment of diplomatic relations between Japan and Palau. The two leaders also confirmed the progress made since last year's summit meeting in infrastructure development, including the Minato Bridge Reconstruction, revitalization of the tourism industry, and cooperation in the agricultural and fisheries sectors, including stable operation of Japanese fishing vessels in Palauan waters. Prime Minister Kishida expressed his gratitude to the Government of Palau for its cooperation in collecting remains of Japanese war dead, and expressed his hope for continued cooperation..
In addition, Prime Minister Kishida stated that Japan will strengthen cooperation in the sectors such as medical and finance, as well as the promotion of personnel exchanges, such as exchanges with Japanese local municipal governments, acceptance of Palauan students, and youth exchanges. The two leaders also confirmed the progress on the bilateral maritime cooperation including maritime security. Prime Minister Kishida expressed his expectation for further strengthen cooperation with Palau, mentioning Japan’s support for capacity building of Palauan maritime authority through joint training exercises and the port call of the Maritime Self-Defense Force destroyer "Ariake" to Palau in August. President Whipps reiterated his appreciation for Japan's cooperation.
3. Discharge of ALPS treated water
Recalling President Whipps' visit to Fukushima last year, Prime Minister Kishida reiterated his appreciation, and stated that Japan will continue to provide explanations to Pacific Island countries in good faith based on scientific evidence in order to respond to the confidence that President Whipps has shown in Japan's efforts regarding the discharge of ALPS treated water into the sea.
President Whipps mentioned that in his visit to Fukushima in June last year, he confirmed that the Government of Japan conducted discharge of ALPS treated water into the sea under the highest safety standard, and he thanked the commitment of the Government Japan regarding the safety.
4. 10th Pacific Islands Leaders Meeting (PALM 10)
Prime Minister Kishida expressed Japan's strong support for regional unity and the Pacific Islands Forum's (PIF) "2050 Strategy for the Blue Pacific Continent (2050 Strategy)", and said that for PALM 10, Japan will pursue outcomes aligned with the "2050 Strategy" and demonstrate that they will work together to address common challenges such as climate change, the maritime sector, and maintaining the free and open international order. The two leaders concurred to work together for the success of PALM 10.
5. Regional Situation
The two leaders also exchanged views on regional affairs and concurred to cooperate in maintaining the free and open international order as important partners who share values and principles.

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