President of the European Commission Jean-Claude Juncker and President of the European Council Donald Tusk represented the European Union at the Summit. Japan was represented by its Prime Minister Shinzō Abe. The EU High Representative for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy/Vice-President of the European Commission, Federica Mogherini, Commission Vice-President for Jobs, Growth, Investment and Competitiveness, Jyrki Katainen, and the EU's Trade Commissioner, Cecilia Malmström, also participated.
"This is a truly historic time for Japan, with its current presidency of the G20 and the accession of Crown Prince Naruhito as Emperor next week. Japan can rely on the European Union on both counts: to strengthen multilateralism, and to support its new era of Reiwa, which means “beautiful harmony” and perfectly sums up our partnership", said President Jean-Claude Juncker. "Our new Economic Partnership Agreement is a landmark moment for global trade. The vast majority of the €1 billion of duties paid annually by EU companies exporting to Japan and vice-versa have been removed. This will help trade between us increase by up to nearly €36 billion. We now need to ensure that this success story continues by making sure we stay on track with the implementation."
The full remarks of President Juncker at the press conference following the Summit are available online. The European Union and Japan have issued a Joint Summit Statement.
Presidents Juncker, Tusk and Prime Minister Abe committed to further develop the EU-Japan Strategic Partnership, which since last year is based on two landmark agreements. The Economic Partnership Agreement, which entered into force on 1 February 2019, bringing together economies that account for just under a third of the world's Gross Domestic Product and are home to over 600 million people. The Strategic Partnership Agreement is a broader framework promoting political and sectoral cooperation and joint actions in more than 40 areas.
Joint commitment to tackling global and regional challenges
The European Union and Japan are like-minded partners, working together both bilaterally as well as in multilateral fora, such as the United Nations, the G7, and the G20. As the Strategic Partnership Agreement foresees, Leaders discussed ways to strengthen cooperation on global issues. They confirmed their joint vision of and support to the rules-based international order with multilateralism, democracy, non-proliferation of weapons of mass destruction, open markets and a global trading system with the World Trade Organisation at its core. EU Leaders reaffirmed their support to the priorities of Japan's current G20 Presidency, with a reform of the World Trade Organisation and an ambitious implementation of the Paris climate agreement as key deliverables for the EU for the G20 summit in Osaka.
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