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Press Conference by the Chief Cabinet Secretary

April 8, 2016 (PM)

Press Conference by the Chief Cabinet Secretary (Excerpt)

[Provisional Translation]

Opening Statement by Chief Cabinet Secretary Suga

I have an announcement regarding a meeting that will be held during the G7 Ise-Shima Summit, inviting the heads of state and government of non-G7 countries and chairpersons of international organizations. The G7 Ise-Shima Summit will be the first summit held in Asia in eight years. In light of this, this outreach meeting will engage in discussions that explore what is needed to sustain the well-being of Asia, which is steering economic growth as the growth center of the world. From this perspective, we will invite the heads of state and government of mainly ASEAN member states, Asian island countries, countries with infrastructure demand, and countries dependent on sea lanes. From Asia, we will invite the heads of state and government of Laos, Viet Nam, Indonesia, Bangladesh, Sri Lanka, and Papua New Guinea. In addition, the head of state and government of Chad, the Chairperson of the African Union, will be invited to ensure that the summit’s outcomes connect to the Tokyo International Conference on African Development (TICAD). Furthermore, from international organizations, we will invite the chairpersons of the UN, OECD, ADB, IMF, and the World Bank. In addition to the discussions focusing on Asia, this meeting will also discuss the issues that Japan, which holds the G7 Presidency, attaches particular importance to from a global perspective, including quality infrastructure investment, health, and women.



REPORTER: I have a question regarding the Foreign Ministers’ Meeting in Hiroshima. You have commented on the significance of the foreign ministers sending out a strong message of peace and touching upon the situation of the atomic bombings. My first question is: exactly what kind of a message of peace does the Government wish to send out? Secondly, what does the Government hope to convey to the foreign ministers regarding the situation of the atomic bombings? These are my two questions.

CHIEF CABINET SECRETARY SUGA: First of all, the Hiroshima Declaration to be issued at the G7 Foreign Ministers’ Meeting, which will cover these issues, is being finalized among the relevant countries. A final document was not adopted at last year’s Review Conference of the Parties to the Treaty on the Non-Proliferation of Nuclear Weapons. Even as the divide deepens between nuclear and non-nuclear weapon states, regrettably there has been a decreasing international momentum towards realizing a world free of nuclear weapons. Furthermore, serious provocations are being made to the international non-proliferation regime at this moment in time with North Korea’s nuclear test and ballistic missile launches. Precisely because these are severe times, Japan considers it critically important that a strong unified message is sent out to the world under the G7 framework, which is comprised of leading nuclear and non-nuclear weapon states. The finalization work is going on now to send out a simple, clear, and strong message to revitalize momentum towards realizing a world free of nuclear weapons and to re-initiate efforts towards a world free of nuclear weapons.


REPORTER: I would like to ask about the Ise-Shima Summit. Moments ago, you mentioned a meeting with non-G7 countries. Recently, the President of Ukraine visited Japan. In addition, I understand that Prime Minister Abe plans to visit Russia in May. Is there a possibility that topics such as improving relations between Russia and Ukraine and improving relations between Russia and Japan would be included in the agenda of the Ise-Shima Summit?

CHIEF CABINET SECRETARY SUGA: As to which issues would ultimately be included in the agenda of the G7 Ise-Shima Summit, this is still being coordinated and I gather that the details would be decided going forward. As I stated a short while ago, first, as the country holding the Presidency, I imagine that discussions will take place on challenges facing the world, such as the world economy and economic issues, as well as terrorism, diplomacy and security, climate change, and development. In addition, I expect that the Summit will address the issue of achieving “a society in which all women shine,” which the Prime Minister is working to promote, as well as health. The final agenda is still being coordinated at this time.

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