Tokyo, 26 September 2022 (TDI): Foreign Minister of Finland, Pekka Haavisto is visiting Japan to attend the state funeral of Japan’s former Prime Minister, Shinzo Abe. The funeral will be attended by leaders from all over the world on 27 September.

After his arrival in Japan, the Foreign Minister of Finland, Pekka Haavisto met with the Foreign Minister of Japan, Hayashi Yoshimasa today in Tokyo.

Both the Foreign Ministers discussed bilateral relations, Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, and rules-based international order.

While talking about Abe Shinzo, Finland’s Foreign Minister stated, “The whole democratic world was shocked and saddened by the assassination of Japan’s former Prime Minister Shinzo Abe.

Abe was an experienced and respected leader in international politics. We want to show solidarity and support to Japan. At the same time, we condemn all violence, including political violence.”

Moreover, the Foreign Ministers of both countries also met and exchanged views on topical foreign policy questions with various Japanese actors.

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Finland and Japan relations

The trade between the two countries spans more than 100 years since the two countries formally established diplomatic relations.

In 1919, Japan established diplomatic ties with Finland and recognized it for the first time. Diplomatic ties were briefly severed in 1944 but were strengthened again in 1957.

Since then, Finland and Japan have preserved friendly ties and collaborated in areas including social welfare, research, and trade. Japanese Airlines began offering nonstop service between Tokyo and Helsinki in 2013.

The leaders of both states strongly also criticized Russia’s actions in Ukraine. They said that the developing crisis, which is endangering the rules-based international order, requires a firm, unified reaction.

The economic cooperation agreement between the European Union and Japan, which came into effect earlier in 2019, provides new chances for Finnish and Japanese companies to work together.