WASHINGTON, Jan 5 (Reuters) – Post-Cold War free trade and economic interdependence have strengthened authoritarian regimes, Japan’s trade and industry minister said on Thursday, urging the United States and other like-minded democracies to counter them with a “new world”. order.”
Japan’s Minister of Economy, Trade and Industry, Yasutoshi Nishimura, said during his speech at the Center for Strategic and International Studies in Washington: “Authoritarian countries have accumulated enormous power both economically and militarily.”
“We must rebuild the world order based on fundamental values such as freedom, democracy, human rights and the rule of law,” he added.
Nishimura spoke ahead of Japanese Prime Minister Fumio Kishida’s visit to Washington next week for talks expected to cover issues including Ukraine, North Korea and China’s tensions with Taiwan. The summit will be preceded by talks between the defense and foreign ministers of the two countries.
Kishida said he would discuss Tokyo’s new security policy in Washington this week after Japan unveiled its biggest military buildup since World War II.
Nishimura’s call to arms comes amid growing concern that Beijing and Moscow will seize control of energy resources and manufacturing supply chains after Russia’s invasion of Ukraine to prevent them from confronting the diplomatic and military forces of the United States, Japan, Europe and other countries. goals.
Nishimura said the leaders of the industrialized Group of Seven will discuss how to respond to economic pressure when they meet in Hiroshima, Japan, in May.
“We must prepare to identify the choke points of countries that seek coercion and, if necessary, take countermeasures,” he said.
The Japanese minister warned that democracies must protect their industrial strength and guard against the loss of technology, especially those that could be put to military use.
He called for Japan-US cooperation to expand beyond semiconductors to biotechnology, artificial intelligence and quantum science.
He did not say whether Tokyo would comply with a broad restriction on exports of chip-making equipment imposed by the Biden administration in October, but he vowed to work more closely with Washington on export controls.
“It is absolutely necessary for us to … strengthen our cooperation in the area of export control,” he said. “We will implement strict export controls based on international cooperation while exchanging views with the United States and other relevant countries.”
On trade, Nishimura reiterated his call for the United States to join the Comprehensive and Progressive Agreement for Trans-Pacific Partnership after former President Donald Trump withdrew from an earlier version of the pact in 2017.
Reporting by Tim Kelly in Tokyo and David Brunnstrom, Michael Martina and Katharine Jackson in Washington; Edited by Chizu Nomiyama
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