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Japanese Foreign Minister Toshimitsu Motegi to conclude European trip


Japanese Foreign Minister Toshimitsu Motegi to conclude European trip

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Photo: Reuters/Ajeng Dinar Ulfiana

Japanese Foreign Minister Toshimitsu Motegi will conclude his visits to Britain and the Eastern EU countries of Slovenia, Poland, and Bosnia-Herzegovina today.

During his trip, Motegi attended a three-day G7 summit in London and held bilateral talks with his British, French and German counterparts. In Poland, the minister joined a meeting of the Visegrad Group–a political grouping consisting of Hungary, Slovakia, Poland and the Czech Republic. These meetings were pertinent as Japan has been urging the EU to formulate an Indo-Pacific foreign and defense strategy to respond to China’s growing activity in the region.

Despite ongoing efforts, the EU has been struggling to formulate a united approach to China. While Germany and France have called on the EU to be more assertive in its China policy, these attempts have been blocked by Belt and Road Initiative beneficiaries such as Hungary and Greece. To address the divergent attitudes toward China, Japan is likely to promote the idea of sustainable and rule-based cooperation between the Indo-Pacific region and the EU. Such an agreement would likely facilitate steadier cooperation among EU member states to achieve consensus on an Indo-Pacific strategy.

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