TOKYO: Saudi Arabia is “Japan’s best and most important friend,” the Japanese Minister of State for Foreign Affairs Keisuke Suzuki has said.
The relationship with the Middle East was crucial for Japan, the minister said, and in particular the relationship with Saudi Arabia, the leader of the Arab and Islamic worlds and host of the G20 summit next year.
Suzuki expressed his regret for the recent attacks on oil facilities in Saudi Arabia. He said Japan stood with the government and people of the Kingdom, and would continue to contribute to peace and stability in the Middle East.
The minister said he was confident that the Vision 2030 reforms in Saudi Arabia aimed at economic diversification would serve further prosperity and stability in the region, and Japan would continue to strengthen cooperation with Riyadh.
Suzuki was speaking at an event at the Saudi Embassy in Tokyo to mark the Kingdom’s National Day, in the presence of the president of the Senate of the Japanese Parliament, Akiko Santo, and Japanese Defense Minister Taro Kono.
It was attended by ministers and businessmen, political, academic, cultural, social and media figures in Japan, ambassadors and representatives of the diplomatic corps in Tokyo, and members of the Saudi community in Japan.
The Saudi Ambassador to Japan, Nayef bin Marzouq Al-Fahadi, said their attendance illustrated the distinguished relations between the Kingdom and Japan.