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Press Conference by the Chief Cabinet Secretary

November 10, 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: Mr. Trump won the U.S. presidential election. First of all, can you please share the comments of the Japanese Government?

CHIEF CABINET SECRETARY SUGA: First, the Government would like to extend its heartfelt congratulations on the election of Mr. Trump. This morning, Prime Minister Abe held a telephone meeting with President-elect Trump. The Prime Minister directly congratulated President-elect Trump and expressed his conviction that the United States would become an even greater country under Mr. Trump’s leadership. President-elect Trump stated that the Japan-U.S. relationship is an extraordinary partnership and that he looked forward to further strengthening this special relationship. The two sides agreed that if possible a meeting between them would be arranged in New York on the 17th of this month before the APEC Economic Leaders’ Meeting. We consider that holding a telephone meeting between the Prime Minister and Mr. Trump soon after his election and reaching an agreement to hold a meeting in the near future have gotten us to a very good start in building trust between the two leaders. As I have always been stating, the Japan-U.S. Alliance is the cornerstone of Japan’s diplomacy. Japan intends to continue to work closely with the United States for peace and prosperity in the Asia-Pacific region and the world. The Japan-U.S. Alliance is becoming ever more important as the security situation in East Asia grows more severe. Japan will further deepen and develop the Japan-U.S. Alliance together with the next administration of Mr. Trump. 

REPORTER: You stated that during the telephone meeting, Mr. Trump said he looked forward to further strengthening the Japan-U.S. relationship. On the other hand, during the election campaign, Mr. Trump suggested that he would reform the nature of the Alliance, indicating that he would request Japan to significantly increase the host-nation support for the U.S. Forces in Japan. What is your analysis of the impacts in this regard?

CHIEF CABINET SECRETARY SUGA: At today’s first telephone meeting between the Prime Minister and Mr. Trump, we sensed acutely that Mr. Trump attaches extreme importance to the Japan-U.S. Alliance and that he intends to promote close collaboration between Japan and the United States.   


REPORTER: You stated that arrangements would be made to hold a meeting in New York before Mr. Trump is inaugurated as President. What are the objectives of the two sides?

CHIEF CABINET SECRETARY SUGA: First of all, by holding a meeting between the leaders of the two countries, they can establish a relationship of trust and discuss the overall importance of the Japan-U.S. Alliance. Indeed, it is extremely meaningful that the leaders hold a meeting shortly following Mr. Trump’s election in the presidential election. 

REPORTER: I have a related question. It is primarily related to the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP). Mr. Trump has been reiterating protectionist comments. Do you anticipate that such arguments will be reflected in his policy as is? Or do you think that Mr. Trump may shift his arguments towards a more realistic course?

CHIEF CABINET SECRETARY SUGA: First, I do not really know what a realistic course is. At the very least, I believe it is extremely important for peace and stability in the world and for economic growth that the two leaders meet early to hold talks regarding their mutual outstanding issues and the future and to create a sense of trust.  

REPORTER: I have a question regarding the Japan-U.S. summit meeting on the 17th. At the meeting, will Japan be encouraging the United States to take part in the TPP or anything of that nature?

CHIEF CABINET SECRETARY SUGA: First of all, the meeting on the 17th is of course the first time that the two of them are meeting. Therefore, we expect that the meeting will build a sense of trust between the two of them by discussing a range of topics, including, fundamentally, the importance of the Japan-U.S. Alliance and the policies of Japan and the United States.

REPORTER: A related question. I understand that for the Abe administration the TPP is a pillar of Japan’s growth strategy. If the TPP cannot enter into force, I imagine this raises concerns that the growth strategy will not proceed as planned and will deal a blow to the Abenomics economic policy that the administration is implementing. Can you please share your thoughts regarding this?

CHIEF CABINET SECRETARY SUGA: That is not in our minds at all. In any case, the leaders of 12 countries confirmed that they would aim for the expeditious entry into force of the TPP. The incumbent President Obama is undertaking maximum efforts to get the TPP passed by Congress by the year-end. In this context, we are of the view that the respective countries including the United States will obtain domestic support to proceed with the procedures.  


REPORTER: At the Tokyo financial market on the 10th, the mood changed from the previous day, and stock prices increased significantly following the trend of the U.S. market. As regards the currency market, the yen fell to the 105 yen range. What is your analysis of the causes? In addition, can you please share your comments?

CHIEF CABINET SECRETARY SUGA: In any case, today, the market climbed and retook the 17,000 range. As for the yen, it is true that the yen has been weakening in contrast to the forecast of the media. In any case, the Government will closely follow the market with a sense of vigilance.


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