On 15 February 2019, during the Munich Security Conference, the Minister of Foreign Affairs, Edgars Rinkēvičs, had a meeting with the Minister of Foreign Affairs of Japan, Taro Kono.
The Foreign Minister expressed appreciation of the excellent bilateral relations between Latvia and Japan and the active political dialogue, which has increased in intensity after the official visit to Latvia by the Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe in January last year. With a view to further strengthening the political dialogue, Edgars Rinkēvičs extended an invitation to the Japanese Foreign Minister to visit Latvia.
The Foreign Ministers of Latvia and Japan agreed to hold the second meeting of the Japan-Baltic Cooperation Dialogue in Riga in order to promote cooperation between Japanese businesses and those in the Baltic region in the field of information technologies and artificial intelligence.
Edgars Rinkēvičs underlined that Japan also was a strategic cooperation partner to Latvia as an EU Member State. “We attach great importance to relationship with Japan. We hope that the EU-Japan Strategic Partnership Agreement will provide a positive impulse to Latvia’s timber industry, food processing, chemical industry and pharmaceuticals, which are already among the leading sectors in our export to Japan,” the Foreign Minister noted.
Edgars Rinkēvičs also welcomed negotiations launched with the ANA airlines and Japanese tour operators so that the first charter flight Tokyo-Riga-Tokyo could be organised in 2019.
In a discussion on developments in relation to the North Korean nuclear programme, Foreign Minister Rinkēvičs expressed support for a continued diplomatic and economic pressure.
The Ministers also shared views on the potential for economic cooperation with the United Kingdom after its withdrawal from the European Union, as well as on regional cooperation issues.
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