Foreign minister Dr. Mohamed Asim on Saturday morning held bilateral talks with his Japanese counterpart, Taro Kono, at the foreign ministry in Male’.
The two ministers reviewed the program of cooperation between the Maldives and Japan and agreed work to further strengthen ties between the two countries.
In that regard, they decided to convene an annual “Policy Dialogue” between the two countries with the aim of transforming the bilateral relations to a more mutually beneficial strategic partnership, the foreign ministry said. The Policy Dialogue will cover political, economic and technical cooperation as well as regional and international issues of mutual interest.
During the meeting, Minister Asim thanked Japan for its support and cooperation provided towards the socio-economic development of the Maldives. He also praised the efficiency and effectiveness of the Japanese Overseas Development Assistance (ODA) programme to the Maldives.
The meeting also saw discussions on regional and global issues of mutual interest, including climate change, terrorism and the situation in the Korean Peninsula.
Minister Kono’s one-day visit comes at a time Maldives and Japan are celebrating the 50th anniversary of the establishment of diplomatic relations. This is the first official visit to the Maldives undertaken by a Japanese foreign minister.