Skip to main content

Home >  News >  The Prime Minister in Action >  May 2015 >  Pacific Vision 21 Tokyo Meeting

The Prime Minister in Action

Pacific Vision 21 Tokyo Meeting

May 9, 2015

Photograph of the Prime Minister delivering an address (1)

Photograph of the Prime Minister delivering an address (1)

  • Photograph of the Prime Minister delivering an address (1)
  • Photograph of the Prime Minister delivering an address (2)

Photograph of the Prime Minister delivering an address (2)

Photograph of the Prime Minister delivering an address (2)

[Provisional Translation]

Prime Minister Shinzo Abe attended the Pacific Vision 21 Tokyo Meeting held at a hotel in Tokyo.

The Prime Minister said in his opening address,

“Thank you for inviting me to this luncheon for Pacific Vision 21.
I want to express my respect and gratitude for the hard work done by all of the participants to hold this Pacific Vision 21 meeting, including the co-chairs from Japan and the United States, Mr. Dennis Hastert, Former Speaker of the U.S. House of Representatives, Mr. Thomas Daschle, Former U.S. Senate Majority Leader, Mr. Yasuo Fukuda, Former Prime Minister, and Mr. Fujio Mitarai, Honorary Chairman of Keidanren.

Last week, I made the first official visit of any Japanese Prime Minister to the United States since former Prime Minister Koizumi’s visit nine years ago. During my visit, in addition to Washington D.C., I went to Boston, San Francisco, and Los Angeles. If I have the opportunity again, next time I would like to visit the mid-west region or go to the western part of the country again. In order to do that, I think it will be important to me to continue working as Prime Minister for a long time.

President Obama held a welcome ceremony for me at the White House, and then we had a summit meeting, a joint press conference, and a state dinner. During the summit meeting, I think we were able to have an extremely frank exchange of opinions and we announced a joint vision statement based on the progress made in the Japan-US Alliance in the seventy years since the end of World War II. Also, I confirmed with President Obama our shared resolve to work together for global peace and prosperity. ‘From that event, we began a new era in Japan-US relations.’ Seventy years from now, I believe that it will be a meeting which people will think this way about.

The following day, I became the first Prime Minister from Japan to address a joint meeting of the US Congress. The previous night there had been a wonderful dinner, but since I was giving a speech the next day, I couldn’t really enjoy much alcohol. In that speech, I remarked upon how we had achieved post-war reconciliation between Japan and the United States, built an unshakeable alliance based on the fundamental values of freedom, democracy, fundamental human rights, and the rule of law. I also stated that the Japan-US Alliance will continue to play a leading role in securing peace, stability, and prosperity in the Asia-Pacific region, and that through our partnership, an alliance of hope between Japan and the United States, we will continue to join hands and make the world better place in the face of the many issues we are confronting in the 21st century, such as terrorism, peacekeeping operations (PKO), epidemics, and climate change. I was able to appeal these points to people at home and overseas. Some of you in attendance today are current or former members of the US Congress, and I would like to thank you for its fine traditions.
I have given countless speeches in to the Diet in Japan, but over the past two and a half years, I have only been applauded by members of the ruling parties. I was privileged in the United States to experience applause from an entire venue for the first time, which is something that I don’t believe I will ever forget. As the Prime Minister of Japan, it was a great honor.

The first Pacific Vision 21 meeting was held in December of last year in Washington D.C. This is the first time a meeting has been held in Japan. I believe that Minister Amari came to speak to you yesterday. Japan and the United States have come to see a final end to TPP negotiations. In economics, I would like for Japan and the United States to cooperate to develop rules in the evolving Asia-Pacific region, and create a free economic zone that will continue to develop, and ensure the free exchanges of people, goods, and capital. In the field of security, under the new Guidelines, I hope that Japan and the United States will cooperate and continue to make a thorough contribution to regional peace and stability.

Given this situation, I expect that everyone here will come together under one roof for an extremely significant discussion. I believe that the deep knowledge of the members of this meeting, your broad-based discussion, and your spirit of passing on the wonderful ties of friendship and cooperation between Japan and the United States to the next generation will provide the Japan-US relationship with new inspiration. I would like to conclude my remarks by expressing my confidence that your advice will be beneficial to the alliance of hope between Japan and the United States in the 21st century.”

Page Top

Related Link