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Jacinda Ardern’s remarks following summit

Rt Hon Jacinda Ardern

Prime Minister
MP for Mt Albert

19 September 2019


Jacinda Ardern’s remarks following summit with Japanese Prime Minister Abe

E ngā mana, e ngā reo, e ngā iwi, e ngā rau rangatira mā

Tēnā koutou katoa

Konnichi wa

Prime Minister Abe and I have concluded a very positive meeting.

Prime Minister I want to thank you for your hospitality hosting us today.

This is the fourth time we have met, but the first in Japan, a country I love.

We have discussed many issues of great importance to our respective countries in that time, but I will never forget the kindness you showed in our first meeting when you offered your condolences for my beloved pet that at that time had only recently passed. It was an incredibly thoughtful gesture I won’t forget.

The bond of friendship applies to the relationship between two countries also.

Ours is a partnership founded on common values such as freedom, democracy, rule of law and human rights. We share a strong commitment to peace and security, free trade and investment and sustainable development.

In a challenging and changing global and regional environment New Zealand and Japan enjoy a stable long-term relationship that in recent years has gone from strength to strength.

Japan and New Zealand are natural partners and we agreed that there is much more we can do together in the region and globally.

Today we discussed a wide range of topics. Broadly the themes were: a deeper, high-value trade and investment relationship, greater cooperation in the Pacific; and strengthening our security partnership.

Japan and New Zealand have long standing ties at the political, trade and economic levels, which will continue to grow in new and innovative ways with the implementation of the Comprehensive and Progressive Trans Pacific Partnership (CPTPP) and the respective flow on benefits that agreement with have to businesses in both countries.

We discussed our shared desire to further regional and economic integration through expanding the membership of CPTPP. New Zealand and Japan are working closely together on its implementation and new member accession.

The growing area of space cooperation was a particular highlight of our discussion, and we look forward to working towards a partnership arrangement on bilateral space cooperation with Japan, which will benefit New Zealand’s burgeoning space industry.

The recent extension of eGate access to Japanese nationals will boost people to people connections between Japan and New Zealand by facilitating tourism, business and education travel by Japanese citizens to New Zealand and make travelling to and from our countries easier.

I’m pleased to confirm that New Zealand and Japan intend to work together on women’s economic empowerment through trade, and to explore cooperative initiatives with other likeminded countries.

Participation in trade is associated with a number of benefits, such as generally higher pay. In both New Zealand and Japan, women tend to be under-represented in the export sector.

I am pleased to announce that we have also agreed to boost our development cooperation in the Pacific including to develop a Joint Declaration on Pacific Cooperation.

My hope is that this will be issued by our Foreign Ministers later this year.

Together we are working towards projects which support Pacific priorities and complementary strengths, such as renewable energy, climate change, infrastructure and addressing fisheries/maritime needs.

I also thanked the Prime Minister for his early support for the Christchurch Call to Action. This piece of work means a lot to New Zealand in the wake of the March 15 terror attack that saw 51 innocent people lose their lives. We thank Japan for being a founding supporter of the Call and for engaging very constructively in early discussions and development of the Call commitments.

We also talked about the importance of closer cooperation on cybersecurity and the role that more formal bilateral dialogue can play in this regard.

Our shared commitment to the rules-based international system makes Japan an important partner for New Zealand in the Indo-Pacific.

We also discussed how we would work more closely together to maintain the security and stability of our region. We have agreed to commence a joint study towards negotiating a security Information Sharing Agreement between Japan and New Zealand.

Finally I would like to express my deep gratitude to the people of Japan for looking after our rugby team, the All Blacks. And looking after the fans who have come from New Zealand to experience the Rugby World Cup.

We recognise your omotenashi and in return New Zealand says San Kyu.

Tēnā koutou, tēnā koutou, tēnā koutou katoa


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