Manila, 7 July 2022 (TDI): Minister for Foreign Affairs of Japan Hayashi Yoshimasa met the President of the Republic of the Philippines Ferdinand Marcos Jr. on July 5.

Minister Hayashi visited the Philippines to attend the ceremony and reception for the Presidential Inauguration.

Hayashi during the Presidential Inaguration

During the Inauguration, Hayashi exchanged words with some of the representatives of other countries in attendance. The Japanese Foreign Minister spoke with Hurley, Governor-General of the Commonwealth of Australia; Don, Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Foreign Affairs of the Kingdom of Thailand; Dato Seri Setia Erywan, Minister of Foreign Affairs II of Brunei Darussalam; and Dato’ Sri Saifuddin, Minister of Foreign Affairs of Malaysia.

Meeting between Hayashi and Marcos 

After the Inauguration, Hayashi, and Marcos held a meeting. The meeting was approximately 25 minutes long. President Marcos welcomed Foreign Minister Hayashi’s visit to the Philippines.

Japanese Foreign Minister Hayashi delivered the letter to President Marcos from Prime Minister Kishida. Hayashi then expressed his appreciation for President Marcos.

Marcos expressed his gratitude for the consistent contribution of the Government of Japan to the Philippines. The President also expressed the desire to continue strengthening their strategic partnership and revitalize the people-to-people exchanges.

Former President of the Philippines, Duterte once declared that the relations between both countries embarked on a golden age. Hayashi then noted that Japan and the Philippines are maritime nations, US allies; and strategic partners.

According to Hayashi, both are strategic partners because they share fundamental values and strategic interests.

Further remarks 

Minister Hayashi expressed the intention of Japan to continue to implement cooperation projects with the Philippines. According to Hayashi, that would be done while leveraging ODA towards the project of a Free and Open Indo-Pacific

The Minister also mentioned the need to render support to the Mindanao peace process. Also, both countries understand the importance of open and free international order.

Both agreed to promote cooperation in several areas; like the post-covid-19 economic recovery, and in the field of security.

Minister for Foreign Affairs of Japan Hayashi Yoshimasa and the President of the Republic of the Philippines Rodrigo R. Duterte during the meeting

The focus of that security cooperation, as agreed by Marcos and Hayashi; is to support asset reinforcement and capabilities enhancement of the Philippine Coast Guard.

Finally, both agreed to strengthen cooperation; like the exercises between the Japan Self-Defense Forces and the Armed Forces of the Philippines.

East and South China Seas and Russian aggression

Hayashi also voiced opposition to the attempts to change the status quo by force; or economic coercion in the East and South China Seas.

The Japanese Minister then expressed support for the position of President Marcos of maintaining the arbitral award of 2016 and protecting the Philippines’ maritime coastal rights.

Marcos and Hayashi agreed to work closely on strengthening the free and open maritime order based on the rule of law. Both recognized that Russian aggression against Ukraine jeopardizes the basis of the international order.

Hayashi and Marcos reaffirmed that unilateral changes to the status quo are unacceptable in the international community. Both also reaffirmed the necessity to strengthen cooperation to deal with North Korea, and Myanmar.

Furthermore, Marcos and Hayashi reaffirmed the need to support the efforts to strengthen the UN system; including the reform of the UNSC, disarmament, and non-proliferation.

Hayashi showed his intentions to further solidify the relations between both countries. According to Hayashi, Japan hopes to increase ties through the platforms established under President Duterte.

It includes the Foreign and Defense Ministerial Meeting (“2+2”). Also, it has the High-Level Joint Committee on Infrastructure Development and Economic Cooperation.