On Saturday, August 21, 2021, the Foreign Minister Fuad Hussein received his Japanese counterpart, Mr. Toshimitsu Motegi, in Baghdad. During the meeting, they discussed bilateral relations between the two countries, and ways to enhance them to meet the aspirations of the two friendly countries. The two sides also discussed regional and international issues of common interest.
The Minister, Fuad Hussein, stressed the deep relationship between the two countries, appreciating Japan’s supportive stances for Iraq, especially the assistance it provided to support the efforts to counter the novel coronavirus pandemic outbreak, noting the importance of Japanese companies’ contribution to investment, especially in infrastructure reconstruction projects, and the development of the oil sector in the south, calling on the Japanese side to increase trade between both countries, hold the meetings of the Iraqi-Japanese joint committee, open more prospects for joint cooperation, and urge Japanese companies to invest in Iraq, considering that the Iraqi market is a fertile market, and the Japanese product is respected by the Iraqi citizen, adding “We support the relations with Japan because of its economic weight and its role in achieving stability, and its relations with countries in the region, and our goal is to expand and develop these relations between the two countries because of their impact on activating common interests,” noting the need to facilitate the granting of entry visas to Iraqis wishing to visit Japan, as it has an impact on the activation of common interests.
The Minister touched on the Iraqi vision for a more stable region, referring to the Iraqi foreign policy based on taking initiative, interaction and cooperation as a way to achieve common interests, and to strengthen dialogue with neighboring countries, describing that Iraq supports the language of dialogue and negotiation to find constructive and sustainable solutions that satisfy all parties, and that Iraq is making significant efforts to hold the Baghdad Conference for Cooperation and Partnership, at the end of this month, to support Iraq and settle disputes to avoid their repercussions on security in Iraq and the region.
For his part, Toshimitsu Motegi, the Japanese Foreign Minister, expressed his thanks for Iraq’s support for the success of the Olympic Games in Japan and the Paralympic Games that will take place soon, and Japan attaches great importance to achieving stability in Iraq, stressing his country’s continuation of providing the necessary assistance for the elections, pointing out that both peace and prosperity in Iraq are necessary for stability in the region, and that Iraq has historically played this role, and the holding of the regional meeting in Baghdad is an appreciation of these efforts in the region.
He also expressed his country’s readiness to enhance cooperation in all fields, including providing (50) million dollars to support Iraq in confronting Corona virus, contributing to the provision of basic services to citizens such as water and electricity, providing loans worth (300) million yen to prepare the Basra refinery and provide job opportunities.
He appreciated Iraq’s efforts in combating terrorism, expressing his concern about the presence of terrorist groups, asking Iraqis to make more efforts to combat ISIS cells.
For the original August 21, 2021 piece from Iraq Ministry of Foreign Affairs referenced in this summary, click here.