Japan has given its proposals on joint economic activities in the South Kuril Islands to Russia, Japanese Foreign Minister Fumio Kishida said at a said at a press conference following Russian-Japanese two-plus-two talks on Monday.
“Taking into account the recent consultations on this issue, we have given the Russian side a package of our proposals on joint economic activities,” he said, noting that the work on filling the list of proposals will continue.
The first round of consultations on joint economic activities on the South Kuril Islands, involving Russian Deputy Foreign Minister Igor Morgulov and his Japanese counterpart Takeo Akiba, was held on March 18 in Tokyo. After the consultations, Japan said that the parties had put forward specific plans for cooperation in tourism industry, healthcare and fishery. According to Akiba, the parties also agreed to discuss the opportunity to arrange charter flights so that former residents of the islands could visit them.
On December 15-16, 2016, during Russian President Vladimir Putin’s visit to Japan and his talks with Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe, a joint statement was adopted saying that consultations on joint economic activities on the South Kuril Islands could become an important step on the way to a peace treaty. Besides, the two countries believe that this statement and all agreements concerning joint economic activities that could be based on it, will not damage the positions of Russia and Japan concerning the peace treaty issue.