TOKYO: Japanese Foreign Minister Motegi Toshimitsu praised the efforts made by Kuwait “to heal the rift” between the Gulf Cooperation Council in regard to the crisis with Qatar, and expressed Japan’s hopes for the GCC summit, aspiring that an agreement will be reached to solve this issue.
Responding to a question from Arab News Japan, Motegi said that “In the field of energy security, we depend on the Middle East to secure ninety percent of our crude oil needs, and that is why we consider peace and stability of the GCC countries vital and extremely important for us. Based on that, we hope that relations between the Gulf states will improve,” during his last press conference of the year held at the Foreign Ministry Tokyo on Friday.
The Japanese foreign minister also said that “based on news reports, the GCC summit will discuss the issue of severed diplomatic ties with Qatar. In this context, the government of the State of Kuwait has reportedly issued a statement that a final agreement had been reached to solve the problem. We see this as very positive developments on this path.”
The GCC summit, which is hosted by Saudi Arabia, will be held in the Saudi capital Riyadh on January 5.
In a statement regarding the Qatari file, Motegi stressed that “the Japanese government highly appreciate the efforts made by Kuwait and the rest of the countries concerned and sincerely hopes to reach a solution (in the Gulf region).”
Saudi Arabia provided 29.761 million oil barrels to Japan in October 2020 ranking first in the list of providers and maintaining its position as the largest exporter of crude oil to the country.
This amounts to 42.4% of total Japanese crude oil imports during that month.
Imports from the UAE amounted to 21.850 million barrels or 31.2% of the total supply of oil imported, while imports from Kuwait equaled 7.5 million barrels, or 7.6% and imports from Qatar amounted to 4.968 million barrels, or 7.1% of the total, according to official data by the Japanese natural resources agency.