Japanese Prime Minister, EU Leaders Reaffirm Commitment To Partnership, COVID-19 Response

MOSCOW (Pakistan Point News / Sputnik - 26th May, 2020) Tokyo and Brussels have agreed to strengthen the Japan-EU strategic partnership and enhance cooperation to combat the ongoing COVID-19 outbreak, according to a statement released by the European Council on Tuesday.

Earlier in the day, Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe, European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen, and European Council President Charles Michel held a video conference and agreed that the strategic partnership between both parties will be vital to aiding the epidemiological and economic recovery from the COVID-19 outbreak.

"The leaders reaffirmed their commitment to the Japan-EU strategic partnership. It will play an important role in recovering from the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic and in tackling other common challenges that have not diminished. Encouraged by the initial positive results, the leaders expressed their determination to continue implementing the Japan-EU Strategic Partnership Agreement and Economic Partnership Agreement," the European Council statement read.

Tokyo and Brussels will also work to strengthen preparedness for any future pandemics and welcomed a resolution passed at the World Health Organization's World Health Assembly that called for greater global solidarity to combat the disease.

According to the statement, the EU and Japan will hold a summit in the near future to discuss further cooperation in the fields of connectivity, climate change, energy, and trade.

Japan and the EU signed an economic partnership agreement and a strategic partnership agreement in July 2018, with both documents enshrining Tokyo and Brussels's shared values on democracy, fair trade and human rights.