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Press Conference by the Chief Cabinet Secretary

September 5, 2016 (AM)

If you can not view the video,click here(Japanese Government Internet TV)
Simultaneous interpretation services for this video are provided by a third party.

Press Conference by the Chief Cabinet Secretary (Excerpt)

[Provisional Translation]


REPORTER: The first Japan-China Summit Meeting in one year and five months is taking place tonight. What themes do you think will be discussed?

CHIEF CABINET SECRETARY SUGA: The meeting is scheduled at 7:30 p.m. today. I would like to refrain from speculating about various issues prior to the meeting. Having said that, however, difficult problems exist between Japan and China, and I think it is precisely because of these challenges that it is important for the two leaders to frankly exchange opinions and seek improvements. Furthermore, I hope today’s Summit Meeting will address the “Mutually Beneficial Relationship Based on Common Strategic Interests,” dialogue and cooperation between the two countries, and various types of interaction.


REPORTER: The U.S. media is reporting that an American youth who disappeared in China 12 years ago was kidnapped by North Korea. A resolution has been submitted to the U.S. Congress that calls for a full-fledged inquiry by the U.S. government. If this type of survey begins, there could be a new development in the effort to resolve the abductions issue through collaboration between Japan and the United States. Please explain your thoughts.

CHIEF CABINET SECRETARY SUGA: I am aware of the media report you mentioned. The Government also knows about the submission of the resolution you noted to both chambers of Congress in February 2016. The Government is putting its fullest efforts into the abductions issue as a top priority for the Abe Cabinet. Furthermore, this issue involves a universal concern of the international community of violating basic human rights. The Government is currently doing its utmost, including close collaboration with United States and other related countries, to realize the return of abductees as quickly as possible. 


REPORTER: I have a question about the Paris Agreement on reduction of greenhouse gases. The United States and China, the two largest emitters, decided to ratify the agreement. This opens the way for the agreement to take effect within the year. Please explain your view of ratification by these two countries.

CHIEF CABINET SECRETARY SUGA: Japan is pleased that the United States and China, who are major greenhouse gas emitters, decided to participate in the Paris Agreement. Japan will also continue to look for proactive initiatives for climate change countermeasures by these two countries. Japan understands the importance of the Paris Agreement too and intends to strive for realization of the G7 goal of having this agreement take effect within the year contained in the Declaration from the recent G7 Ise-Shima Summit Meeting 


REPORTER: I have a question about activities by China in the South China Sea. It has become apparent that China is preparing for land reclamation efforts around Scarborough Shoal. Please explain the related facts.

CHIEF CABINET SECRETARY SUGA: The Government is gathering and analyzing intelligence related to China’s movements in the South China Sea on a regular basis with strong interest. The President of the Republic of the Philippines stated on September 2 that China is making efforts to build a structure near Scarborough Shoal. I would like to refrain from responding with detailed information because of the nature of the situation. However, China has already been conducting large-scale rapid land reclamation in the South China Sea. Such activity is a unilateral attempt to change the status quo, and it is a serious concern. Japan has consistently stressed the importance of the rule of law up to now and thinks countries should strictly refrain from unilateral actions that raise tensions. Japan strongly hopes that countries involved the conflict will adhere to the final decision of the Arbitration Court from July and that this will contribute to the peaceful resolution of conflict in the South China Sea.

REPORTER: Japan issued a message regarding the United Kingdom’s departure from the European Union. Was there some type of reaction from the U.K. side?

CHIEF CABINET SECRETARY SUGA: I am not aware of an official document, but Japan is actively exchanging opinions at various international meetings. 

REPORTER: Could you mention concerns about the impact on Japanese companies related to the exit? 

CHIEF CABINET SECRETARY SUGA: The Government is proposing assistance, including items in the latest economic stimulus measures, aimed at minimizing the impact on Japanese companies with operations in the U.K.


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