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Peters in Japan: Working together for the Pacific

Rt Hon Winston Peters Minister of Foreign Affairs

25 May 2006

Peters in Japan: Working together for the Pacific

The cooperation of major development partners in the Pacific will be a key theme of Foreign Minister Winston Peters’ week-long visit to Japan, which starts today.

Mr Peters will attend the Pacific Islands Leaders' Meeting (PALM) in Tokyo and Okinawa (May 25-27), hosted by Japan, and then have bilateral talks with the Japanese Government (May 28-30).

“The PALM Summit offers an excellent opportunity for the leaders of Japan and Pacific lsland countries to discuss the many challenges the region faces,” Mr Peters said.

PALM is attended by the Leaders of Japan and fourteen Pacific Island countries, and the Foreign Ministers of Australia and New Zealand.

“I welcome the opportunity to underline New Zealand’s commitment to work constructively with other major development partners in the Pacific, including Australia and Japan, to ensure our aid efforts are better harmonised.”

The bilateral leg of visit will provide an opportunity to discuss regional and international issues, and prospects for closer cooperation between the two countries.

“In June last year, the Prime Ministers of Japan and New Zealand issued a Joint Statement on taking the bilateral relationship forward. We have a well-established relationship across many fields, including trade, culture, education, and science.

“This visit will re-affirm New Zealand’s desire to ensure that New Zealand/Japan relations continue to grow strongly,” concluded Mr Peters.

ENDS

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