Brunei, Japan discuss SCS and North Korea
James Kon

HIS Majesty the Sultan and Yang Di-Pertuan of Brunei Darussalam and Prime Minister Shinzo Abe of Japan yesterday in a bilateral meeting briefly discussed about the issue of South China Sea (SCS) and both leaders agreed that the unity of Asean is important in resolving the issue in compliance with international law.

Japan is also prepared to extend its hand of assistance for the efforts in solving the issue of South China Sea.

Details of the bilateral meeting were revealed during a dinner with Miss Kuni Sato, Press Secretary, Director General for Press and Public Diplomacy from the Ministry of Foreign Affairs Japan, with Councillor, Cabinet Secretariat Mr Taniguchi Tomohiko and other Japanese officials.

According to Miss Kuni Sato, “Both leaders discussed South China Sea during the bilateral meeting and Prime Minister Abe mentioned that all the countries concerned should be guided by international law and refrain from using force. Both leaders agreed that Asean unity will continue to be of importance in solving the issue.”

His Majesty and Abe also discussed on the issue of North Korea abductions of Japanese citizens as the Prime Minister emphasised that his administration would continue to work seriously on the resolution of the issue and sought continuing support of Brunei Darussalam on the issue.

In response, His Majesty said Brunei understands the situation and will continue to cooperate on the issue.

On the ties between Brunei and Japan, Miss Kuni Sato said that Japan and Brunei Darussalam will be co-chairing the 4th Japan-Asean Commemorative Summit this year from December 13 to 15, 2013 to mark the 40th Anniversary of Japan-Asean friendship.

Prime Minister Abe is expecting the important event will further enhance the bilateral relations between Japan and Asean.

Japan also extended its gratitude to Brunei Darussalam for the long and stable supply of LNG whereby 90 per cent of Brunei’s LNG goes to Japan. He also expressed readiness to cooperate further in Brunei’s diversification efforts by providing assistance in the creation of jobs as well as technologies transfer in renewable and conservation of energy

Speaking on the importance of youth exchange, Prime Minister Abe highlighted “the vital project of JENESYS 2.0 in promoting youth exchange”.

Both leaders agreed to further promote bilateral relations at various levels. Prime Minister Abe also thanked Brunei for relaxing import restrictions on products from eight prefectures of Japan including Fukushima. - Borneo Bulletin (10 October 2013)