AMMAN — Deputy Prime Minister and Foreign Affairs Minister Ayman Safadi and Minister for Foreign Affairs of Japan Yoshimasa Hayashi on Sunday held the fourth phase of strategic dialogue between the two countries.

The two ministers went over mechanisms to enhance economic, investment, commercial, defence and security cooperation, as well as mutually agreed upon programmes, according to a Foreign Ministry statement

Safadi and Hayashi stressed both countries’ keenness to continue developing cooperation in various fields in a way that reflects the strategic relations between Amman and Tokyo.

The two ministers also followed up on the outcomes of His Majesty King Abdullah’s visit to Japan in April, stressing ongoing efforts to transform these outcomes into tangible cooperation to serve both countries and enhance bilateral relations.

Later, Hayashi and Minister of Planning and International Cooperation Zeina Toukan signed the exchange of notes for a concessional loan with a total value of $102.8 million to support the general budget in terms of the Kingdom’s reform efforts and to enhance the resilience of the electricity sector. The two also signed a grant of $6.4 million from the Japanese government through the Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA) to finance a project to enhance the capacity of power system.

Safadi and Hayashi also discussed several regional and international issues of common interest.

Safadi acquainted his Japanese counterpart with Jordan’s efforts to stop the deterioration in Palestine and to launch serious negotiations to realise a just and comprehensive peace. This is the only means to reach the two-state solution as per legitimate and international resolutions, according to the minister.

He also briefed Hayashi with pan-Arab efforts exerted in cooperation with international partners to reach a solution to the crisis in Syria according to the step-by-step methodology in line with UN Resolution 2254.

Safadi also warned against the drop in international support for refugees.

In a joint press conference, Safadi stressed that the dialogue reflected both countries’ commitment to move ahead with constructive cooperation in all fields, especially in terms of energy, water, investment, defence, and anti-terrorism efforts.

Regionally, Safadi said that his Japanese counterpart reviewed challenges his country faces with North Korea, and the issue of treated water discharge from the Fukushima nuclear reactor and Japan’s ocean security initiative. Safadi stressed the Kingdom’s firm stance on the need to respect international law and the UN Charter, build regional and international relations on the basis of mutual respect and ensure security, stability and prosperity for all. He also highlighted Jordan’s confidence that Japan acts within these frameworks.

For his part, the Japanese foreign minister expressed his happiness for Jordan to be the first stop on his regional tour, referring to progress in political, economic and security matters.

He also stressed Japan’s commitment to continuing support for Jordan’s economic and financial reforms and hosting of refugees.

Hayashi expressed aspiration to participate in the third Arab-Japanese political dialogue, to be held in Cairo on September 5, and in the first ministerial meeting of Jordan, Egypt and Japan.

This is the fourth round of strategic dialogue with Japan since both countries agreed to upgrade relations with the strategic partnership in 2018. The third round of dialogue was held in Japan in March, the statement added.

Next year, Jordan and Japan will celebrate 70 years of establishing diplomatic ties.

Japan’s financial assistance to the Kingdom from 1999 to 2023 amounted to some $1.9 billion, of which over $600 million were grants and 1.3 billion were concessional loans. Japan also supported the Jordan Response Plan to the crisis in Syria in 2022 with some $8 million, and pledged $11 million in 2023.

Amman and Tokyo are scheduled to hold the fifth round of the political-military dialogue in December.

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