Japan, Canada to boost cooperation for free, open Indo-Pacific

Japanese Prime Minister Kishida Fumio has found some common ground with his Canadian counterpart Justin Trudeau as part of his efforts toward a free and open Indo-Pacific.

The two met in Ottawa on Thursday. Kishida is touring five Group of Seven countries and meeting with their leaders ahead of the G7 summit in Hiroshima in May.

Japan holds this year's presidency of the group. Kishida says Japanese officials are leading discussions on climate change, economic security, and other challenges in cooperation with Canada and other nations.

He and Trudeau agreed to work together to ensure the summit is a success.
Kishida said, "We will show our vision and determination to firmly reject unilateral attempts to change the status quo by force, threats made with nuclear weapons, and the use of such weapons, while expressing our intent to protect the international order based on the rule of law."

Trudeau said, "We will continue to work with our partners at the G7 and around the world as we move forward on keeping people safe."

Canada unveiled a new Indo-Pacific strategy in November that describes China as "an increasingly disruptive global partner." Beijing has been stepping up its maritime activities in the region. Kishida said at the meeting that Japan is working to drastically reinforce its defense capabilities.