"The World and Japan" Database (Project Leader: TANAKA Akihiko)
Database of Japanese Politics and International Relations
National Graduate Institute for Policy Studies (GRIPS); Institute for Advanced Studies on Asia (IASA), The University of Tokyo

[Title] Joint Press Conference by Prime Minister Junichiro Koizumi of Japan and President Pervez Musharraf of The Islamic Republic of Pakistan

[Date] March 14, 2001
[Source] Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Japan
[Full text]

I. Statement by Prime Minister Junichiro Koizumi of Japan

At this time, in this memorable year, the fiftieth anniversary since the establishment of diplomatic relations between Japan and Pakistan, we have had the pleasure of welcoming President Pervez Musharraf.

We engaged in a very candid exchange of views in order to further strengthen the friendly ties between Japan and Pakistan. I believe we had very good meetings. This was our first meeting one-on-one, but on two occasions in the past we have conversed with each other over the phone. Having met with him in person today, I believe we have been able to further strengthen our mutual trust. By dialogue and the idea of security or policy dialogue on economic cooperation, we saw eye-to-eye that we should further promote such dialogues, and I think this marked further progress in Japan-Pakistan relations. I am most gratified about that.

President Musharraf, within Pakistan, is faced with numerous difficulties and, of course, the situation is tough both domestically and internationally. In spite of that, President Musharraf has been taking very strong leadership and in the interest of domestic stability and in the fight against terrorism, President Musharraf has been working very actively and resolutely, and I should express my respect to him for that. And I hope that under the strong leadership of President Musharraf, stability will be achieved in Pakistan. Moreover, in terms of cooperation, in the international arena, I should like to strengthen cooperation between Japan and Pakistan. President Musharraf, please.

II. Statement by President Pervez Musharraf of the Islamic Republic of Pakistan

Thank you very much. It is indeed a pleasure for me to be addressing this press conference. Let me say that the Prime Minister and I have just concluded a most satisfying round of official talks. Our exchanges took place in a most cordial atmosphere. We covered a wide range of international and regional issues, bilateral relations-especially economic collaboration between the two countries, between Pakistan and Japan-were also discussed at length.

I briefed the Prime Minister about my government's program of economic and political reforms and restructuring aimed at establishing a stable democracy, bringing good governance into Pakistan, rebuilding institutions, and alleviating poverty in Pakistan. We are conscious of the Japanese sensitivity to nuclear issues, and I have reaffirmed our policy of restraint in all nuclear matters.

I also briefed Prime Minister Koizumi on the situation in Afghanistan and the tension prevailing on our borders with India. We explored the possibility of Pakistan and Japan joining hands in the reconstruction of Afghanistan. Pakistan, being a close neighbor, can play a useful role in this regard, and I have assured the Prime Minister that Pakistan remains committed to contributing its full to any reconstruction and rehabilitation effort that we undertake in Afghanistan.

There could not have been a more appropriate time to visit this country of charm and beauty than at the present auspicious moment when Pakistan and Japan are poised to launch celebrations to mark the golden jubilee of our diplomatic relations. Pakistan cherishes its bonds of friendship and cooperation with Japan and wishes to strengthen them further. It is gratifying that friendly ties between our two countries have withstood vicissitudes and continue to grow.

Japan has been our leading trade partner and also a major source of economic assistance and foreign investment in Pakistan. The Japanese economic assistance has significantly contributed to the economic development of Pakistan and we are thankful to the Government of Japan, its people, and its leaders for their help.

Pakistan and Japan have come even closer to each other in the wake of the tragic events of September 11. We stand together with the rest of the international community in the fight against terrorism.

I have extended an invitation to Prime Minister Koizumi to visit Pakistan and give us an opportunity to show our hospitality, and love and affection for him. I hope he will be able to do us the honor of visiting us at the earliest possible date. Thank you very much.