News Release

PH, Japan to sign at least 7 agreements during PBBM’s working visit

The Philippines and Japan will ink seven key agreements covering various areas of cooperation during President Ferdinand R. Marcos Jr.’s official working visit to Tokyo, the Department of Foreign Affairs (DFA) confirmed Wednesday.

The trip, slated from February 8 to 12, will include a meeting with Japanese Prime Minister Fumio Kishida and an audience with Emperor Naruhito.

According to DFA Assistant Secretary for Asian and Pacific Affairs Neal Imperial, the President’s visit to Tokyo seeks to “maximize the full potential of the Philippines-Japan strategic partnership in all its aspects and facilitate closer defense, security, political, economic and people-to-people ties.”

“The Department of Foreign Affairs considers the President’s visit to Japan as consequential. Japan is the first country with which the Philippines has forged a strategic partnership and is only one of two strategic partners of the Philippines, the other one being Vietnam,” Imperial said.

“The official working visit is expected to reaffirm the strong and vibrant relations between the two countries,” added Imperial.

This will be the first visit of the President to Japan since taking office.

Japan, Imperial pointed out, is the only country with which the Philippines has a bilateral free trade agreement (FTA) called the Japan-Philippines Economic Partnership Agreement or JPEPA.

In 2021, Japan was the Philippines’ second largest trading partner as well as the third largest export market and second top source of imports, according to the DFA official.

In a media release, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Japan expressed hope that the visit by the President and First Lady Louise Araneta-Marcos will “further deepen the bilateral cooperation.”

Also joining the President are former President Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo, Senate President Juan Miguel Zubiri, House Speaker Martin Romualdez, DFA Secretary Enrique Manalo, Finance Secretary Benjamin Diokno, Trade Secretary Alfredo Pascual, Energy Secretary Raphael Lotilla, Tourism Secretary Christina Frasco, Special Assistant to the President Anton Lagdameo Jr., and Communications Secretary Cheloy Velicaria-Garafil, among others. #