Press Release on State Counsellor’s working visit to Japan

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State Counsellor Daw Aung San Suu Kyi addresses the Japan-Mekong Business Forum in Tokyo, Japan. 
Photo: MNA

At the invitation of His Excellency Mr. Shinzo Abe, Prime Minister of Japan, Daw Aung San Suu Kyi, State Counsellor of the Republic of the Union of Myanmar, paid a working visit to Japan to hold bilateral talks and attend the 10th Mekong-Japan Summit, held in Tokyo from 8 to 9 October 2018, and arrived back Yangon on 10 October. The State Counsellor was accompanied by Union Minister for the Office of the Union Government U Thaung Tun, Union Minister for International Cooperation U Kyaw Tin, Deputy Minister for the Office of the President U Min Thu, Deputy Minister for Planning and Finance U Set Aung.
State Counsellor attended the Welcome Dinner hosted by Mr. Shinzo Abe, Prime Minister of Japan, on 8 October at the Residence of Prime Minister, in honour of the Heads of Delegation from Mekong countries attending the Mekong-Japan Summit.
State Counsellor together with leaders of other Mekong countries attended the Breakfast Meeting hosted by Japan-Mekong Parliamentary Friendship Association at the New Otani Hotel on 9 October. Afterwards, State Counsellor attended the 10th Mekong-Japan Summit held at the State Guesthouse. The meeting was chaired by H.E. Mr. Shinzo Abe, Prime Minister of Japan, and attended by H.E Mr. Hun Sen, Prime Minister of Cambodia, H.E Mr. Thongloun Sisoulith, Prime Minister of Lao PDR, H.E Mr. Prayut Chan-o-cha, Prime Minister of Thailand and H.E Mr. Nguyen Xuan Phuc, Prime Minister of Viet Nam.
At the Summit, State Counsellor delivered a statement and reviewed the achievements of Mekong-Japan Cooperation under the New Tokyo Strategy 2015 which has been implemented throughout the period from 2015 and 2018. She also discussed future directions of the Mekong-Japan Cooperation, in particular the improvement of regional connectivity infrastructure including transport and energy sectors, the enhancement of industrial connectivity between Mekong and Japan, the creation of People-Centered Society, ITC and human resources development and regional and international issues. The Summit adopted the “Tokyo Strategy 2018 (2019-2021)” as a guiding framework for Mekong-Japan Cooperation for the next 3 years.
Myanmar has implemented over 60 bilateral projects and has benefitted from over 100 multilateral projects implemented together with other Mekong countries under the “Tokyo Strategy 2015”. The new strategy, “Tokyo Strategy 2018”, is comprised of three main pillars; Vibrant and Effective Connectivity, People-Centered Society and the Realization of a Green Mekong.
Myanmar will continue its sectoral cooperation under the new strategy. After the Summit, State Counsellor together with other leaders of the Mekong countries attended the Joint Press Conference and gave her comments on the outcome of the Summit.
Mekong-Japan Cooperation was established in 2009 by Cambodia, Laos, Myanmar, Thailand, Vietnam and Japan. The main objective of Mekong-Japan cooperation is to achieve socio-economic developments and promote connectivity in the Mekong region through the Japan Development Assistance Fund.
On 9 October 2018, State Counsellor Daw Aung San Suu Kyi held bilateral talks with H.E. Mr. Shinzo Abe, Prime Minister of Japan, at the State Guesthouse.
During the talks, the two leaders cordially and frankly discussed matters pertaining to the promotion of Myanmar-Japan bilateral relations and cooperation, Japan’s continued support in Myanmar’s democratization process, peace and national reconciliation process, confirmation of two development projects for Yangon with the assistance of 70 billion Yen such as reduction of traffic congestion, improvement of drainage system and sewerage system, rural development projects, cooperation in development of Small and Medium Size Enterprises, construction of houses for the displaced persons from Rakhine State, and improvement of transport, water and electricity distribution system in Rakhine State.
Then, State Counsellor and Japanese Prime Minister held the joint press briefing. Prime Minister Shinzo Abe hosted dinner to State Counsellor and Myanmar delegation at the State Guesthouse.
While in Tokyo, State Counsellor Daw Aung San Suu Kyi gave an interview to NHK News Agency on 6 October 2018, and explained the latest developments on Myanmar-Japan bilateral relations, Mekong-Japan cooperation mechanisms, outcomes from the 10th Mekong-Japan Summit, the situation in Rakhine State and other issues.
In the evening, State Counsellor met with officials and family members of Myanmar Embassy, Tokyo and the Military Attache Office in the New Otani Hotel and gave guidance to the staff to exert efforts to further promote Myanmar-Japan bilateral relations, to promote trade and investment from Japan and to protect the interests of Myanmar society living in Japan.
On 7 October 2018, State Counsellor and Myanmar delegation visited Izumizaki model village in Fukuoka Prefecture, to learn the practices, production and distribution of agricultural products.
On 8 October 2018, State Counsellor received Mr. Natsuo Yamaguchi, leader of New Komeito Party and Mr. Yohei Sasakawa, Chairman of Nippon Foundation on separate occasions at the New Otani Hotel. During the meeting with Mr. Yamaguchi, matters pertaining to the promotion of Myanmar-Japan bilateral relations, Japan’s continued assistance in the democratic transition, sustainable development and human resources development of Myanmar were discussed.
During the meeting with Mr. Yohei Sasakawa, they discussed matters on Myanmar’s peace process and national reconciliation efforts, efforts on elimination of leprosy and construction of schools in Rakhine State.
In the afternoon, State Counsellor attended Myanmar Silk Promotion Event held at the ASEAN-Japan Centre and cut the ribbons to launch the event together with Mr. Hiroto Izumi, Special Advisor of Japanese Prime Minister and Secretary-General of the ASEAN-Japan Centre.
In the afternoon, State Counsellor received Mr. Hiroyuki Ishige, CEO of JETRO at the Meiji Kinenkan, and discussed matters on attracting more Japanese businessmen to invest in Myanmar. Afterwards, State Counsellor attended and delivered the opening address at the Myanmar Investment Conference held with the theme of “Strengthening the Bond between Myanmar and Japan”. The Conference was attended by more than 400 Japanese businessmen.
In the afternoon, State Counsellor received Mrs. Akie Abe, wife of Japanese Prime Minister Mr. Shinzo Abe at the New Otani Hotel.

Ministry of Foreign Affairs
Nay Pyi Taw
Dated: 11 October 2018

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