April 13th, local time, Japan and Germany held “2+2” online talks between foreign ministers and defense ministers. During this period, Japan proposed that after a German frigate arrived in Asia in August this year, the two sides would hold joint maritime exercises. Germany agreed to further discussions between the two sides in the future.
According to Reuters on April 13, Japanese Foreign Minister Toshimitsu Shigeki, Defense Minister Nobuo Aigishi held a videoconference with German Foreign Minister Haiko Mass and Defense Minister Annegret Krunp-Kalenbauer on the same day, mainly discussing defense cooperation issues such as intelligence sharing, arms procurement and technology transfer. The Japanese government said that this was the first time that the two countries had held such “2+2” talks.
According to Kyodo News Agency, at the meeting, Japan proposed that in addition to cooperating with the joint exercises of the Self-Defense Forces dispatched by German ships, Japan and Germany would also jointly carry out vigilance and surveillance activities against the transfer of materials by North Korean ships at sea. Shigeki welcomed Germany’s plan to send ships and Germany’s relevant policies in the Indo-Pacific region.
Maas pointed out that it is very important for Japan and Germany to have close bilateral dialogue and maintain close ties in defense policy. Kyodo News Agency reported that at the meeting, the Japanese and German governments confirmed that they would cooperate to realize the so-called concept of “free and open Indo-Pacific”.
According to Xinhua News Agency, on March 22 this year, Toshimiuri Mogi and Ina Lepert, the German ambassador to Japan, signed a military intelligence protection agreement in Tokyo. According to Annegret Kramp-Karenbauer, the agreement is crucial for the two technological powers to cooperate in a truly valuable way.
For Germany, the agreement is conducive to increasing its participation in Asian affairs. Last September, Germany adjusted its foreign policy and drafted diplomatic and trade guidelines for the Indo-Pacific region, seeking to strengthen its presence in Asia in the field of security. German officials say Germany will send a frigate cruise to Asia in August this year.