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- Press Conference by Minister Hagiuda (Excerpt)
Press Conference by Minister Hagiuda (Excerpt)
*Note: This is a provisional translation for reference purposes only.
Friday, June 10, 2022
Press Conference Room, METI
Sanctions against Russia
I have one point to mention first.
In response to the Russian invasion of Ukraine, Japan is imposing strong sanctions against Russia and certain other countries, in cooperation with the international community. Based on Cabinet approval obtained on June 7, a Cabinet decision was passed today to amend the Export Trade Control Order in order to ban the export of goods that would help strengthen Russia's industrial infrastructure. The measure's promulgation date is today, and it will come into effect on June 17.
As a result, exporting freight trucks, dump trucks, bulldozers, and other machinery to Russia will be banned from June 17 onward.
Further details will be explained by the administrative staff.
We intend to maintain a close watch on the situation surrounding Ukraine, while imposing strict sanctions in cooperation with the G7 and other members of the international community.
WTO Ministerial Conference
Q: I have two questions about the WTO Ministerial Conference that opens on the 12th.
Given that this is the first conference in four and a half years and the international economic order has changed in the interim, what are your expectations regarding the meeting this time around?
Also, what stance are you intending to adopt in the discussions given METI's focus on restoring the Appellate Body's functions?
A: The 12th WTO Ministerial Conference opens on the 12th of this month, but unfortunately, I will be attending the end of the Diet session during the event. METI State Minister Hosoda is therefore going to attend on my behalf if circumstances permit. This is the first Ministerial Conference in four and a half years, and I understand that the discussion agenda will include responses to the pandemic, food security, and WTO reform such as its dispute settling function. I hope a consensus can be reached that firmly demonstrates the WTO's significance and contribution in relation to these global issues.
In particular, settling disputes is one of the WTO's most important functions, and I am aiming for all the member states' ministers to commit to discussing it in earnest, with a view to restoring it soon. There is no way to predict the outcomes of the negotiations yet, but Japan intends to make a strong contribution toward issuing a Ministerial Declaration.
Q: I would like to ask you about the IPEF and Economic 2+2.
The other day, the USTR scheduled an IPEF meeting in Paris for tomorrow. Please tell us how Japan is going to participate and what kinds of matters are going to be discussed?
Also, there are reports that an Economic 2+2 is going to be held in Washington on the 29th of next month. Can you tell us what the current situation is regarding examining the relevant issues?
A: The US announced last month that the Indo-Pacific Economic Framework (IPEF) was going to be launched, and it was expected that discussions would be advanced toward future negotiations. To that end, an informal ministerial meeting on trade under the IPEF was scheduled to be held in Paris tomorrow. The details about what will be discussed have not been disclosed. Attending from Japan will be METI Vice-Minister for International Affairs Hirose and Parliamentary Vice-Minister for Foreign Affairs Miyake. Japan intends to actively contribute to the discussions so that the participating countries can share their wisdom and make the IPEF a meaningful framework.
In last month's Japan-US joint leader's statement, the two leaders expressed their intention to hold the Japan-US Economic Policy Consultative Committee meeting—so-called "Economic 2+2"—in July 2022 involving ministerial-level foreign and economic affairs officials from their respective governments. I will refrain from answering questions about details such as when and where they will be held, as these matters are currently being coordinated between the two governments. However, in the Economic 2+2 meeting, we intend to discuss strengthening Japan-US cooperation based on the policies confirmed between the two leaders regarding areas such as ensuring economic security including supply chain resilience and strengthening the rules-based economic order in the Indo-Pacific region.