Speech by Prime Minister KISHIDA Fumio at the ASEAN-Indo-Pacific Forum

September 6, 2023

[Provisional translation]

  1. Introduction
    Distinguished guests and participants. Selamat pagi.
    I am very much honored to have a chance to visit to Indonesia and to speak to you at this ASEAN Indo-Pacific Forum as the Prime Minister of Japan, especially in this commemorative 50th Year of ASEAN-Japan Friendship and Cooperation and the 65th anniversary of the establishment of diplomatic relations between Japan and Indonesia.
    Supported by the dramatic economic development of Indonesia and other ASEAN countries, the Indo-Pacific Region is now a powerful driver of the global economy.
    I think it is very timely that Indonesia has set the theme “Epicentrum of Growth” as this year's ASEAN Chair.
    I am proud that many cooperation projects from Japan will be introduced at this forum.
  2. New Plan for a “Free and Open Indo-Pacific (FOIP)” and ASEAN Outlook on the Indo-Pacific (AOIP)
    The ASEAN Outlook on the Indo-Pacific (AOIP) shares fundamental principles such as openness, transparency, inclusiveness, and respect for international law with a “Free and Open Indo-Pacific (FOIP)” which Japan has been promoting.
    As a consistent supporter of ASEAN Centrality and unity, Japan was among the first countries to express its full support for the ASEAN Outlook on the Indo-Pacific in 2019.
    And today, I hereby announce the “Japan-ASEAN Comprehensive Connectivity Initiative” and declare that Japan will promote cooperation to strengthen connectivity in six areas.
  3. Japan-ASEAN Comprehensive Connectivity Initiative Overview
    The six areas and concrete ideas are as follows.
    The first is transportation infrastructure development. Japan facilitates the flow of people and goods among ASEAN countries by developing ports, roads, railroads, and airports. The projects implemented by Japan have expanded to worth 2.8 trillion yen. In addition to hard infrastructure cooperation, we are promoting soft infrastructure cooperation through technical cooperation, continuously providing Japanese technology and knowledge.
    The second area is “Digital Connectivity.” Japan will cooperate with ASEAN countries in promoting digitization and strengthening regional connectivity utilizing digital technology, as well as contributing to the security of cyberspace.
    The third is “Maritime Cooperation” . This is an important element in strengthening connectivity between Japan and ASEAN countries, which are linked by the sea. Japan will assist ASEAN countries in enhancing their maritime law enforcement capacity, through training programs and grant of patrol vessels for the coast guard agencies and maritime police.
    The fourth area is “Supply Chain Resilience.” Facing the COVID-19 pandemic and Russia's aggression against Ukraine, ensuring a stable distribution of goods and food security have become important issues. Japan will contribute to supply chain resilience in the ASEAN region, and will build economies that can withstand a crisis together.
    The fifth is “Electricity Connectivity” . The ASEAN region is experiencing rapid economic development, and demand for electric power is also growing. In order to ensure a stable electric power supply, Japan will support the improvement of electricity connectivity through the formulation of master plans and training programs.
    Lastly, “Human and Knowledge Connectivity.” The foundation for the development of society is “people” and their “knowledge.” We will foster human resources in ASEAN countries through conducting personnel exchanges and training programs in a wide range of fields, as well as strengthen the network of people in Japan and ASEAN countries.
    In these areas, Japan will provide capacity building projects for 5,000 individuals over the next three years. By promoting technical cooperation with ASEAN countries and strengthening our network, Japan will grow together with ASEAN. We hope to build a future that Japan and ASEAN can co-create new social values.
  4. The Commemorative Summit
    In concluding this 50th Year for ASEAN-Japan Friendship and Cooperation, Japan will welcome the ASEAN Leaders to Tokyo and host the Commemorative Summit in Tokyo in December.
    Together with the ASEAN Leaders, we would like to jointly launch a new vision for the general direction of ASEAN-Japan relations and cooperation in the coming years.
    We will launch a wide range of cooperation initiatives in the political and security, economic, cultural and social fields, and further promote attractive cultural, people-to-people and intellectual exchanges and support for Japanese language education.
    Through these initiatives, let us work together to pass on long-standing ASEAN-Japan “Golden Friendship” to the next generation and to make new era our “Golden Opportunity”.
    Thank you very much. Terima kasih.

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