MANILA/TOKYO – The Philippines and Japan will hold an inaugural Foreign and Defense Ministerial Meeting or 2+2 on April 9 in the Japanese capital, as agreed by Prime Minister Fumio Kishida and President Rodrigo Duterte during their tele-summit last November 2021.
Foreign Affairs Secretary Teodoro Locsin and National Defense Secretary Delfin Lorenzana will head the Philippine delegation. They will meet their Japanese counterparts to discuss how the two countries can work together amidst the growing complexity in the regional and international security environment.
“The 2+2 is the next logical progression in the deepening policy and security cooperation between the two countries, and is envisioned to be a key component in further strengthening the decade-old PH-Japan Strategic Partnership,” the DFA said in a statement.
It added that the close ties between the two countries for six decades now continue to expand to various areas of cooperation, and have resulted in the improvement of the Philippines’ maritime law enforcement capabilities, increased maritime domain awareness, and enhanced counterterrorism and Humanitarian Assistance and Disaster Relief (HADR) capabilities, among other areas.
Japan is only the second country with which the Philippines has a similar mechanism after the United States.
The DFA also noted that the meeting is expected to lay the groundwork for PH-Japan security partnership in the next decade. - PR