The 6th High Level EU-Japan Development Policy Dialogue took place on 3 July 2018 in Brussels.
The high-level meeting aimed at strengthening dialogue and cooperation, seeking collective action in a wide range of areas, including the implementation of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) and the upcoming Japanese Presidency of the G-20. The two sides also exchanged on recent developments such as the European Commission's proposal for a new Multiannual Financial Framework and the upcoming start of the Post-Cotonou negotiations process.
How to finance development and achieve the SDGs as a unique vector of stability, prosperity and benefit to all stakeholders worldwide was at the core of the discussions. Gender was also high on the agenda and notably the potential synergies between the EU's Spotlight initiative and the Japanese-ASEAN Women Empowerment Fund. Regarding cooperation in the field, both sides exchanged views on EuroAsian connectivity, the Japanese Free and Open Indo Pacific Strategy, and Iraq, Sahel G-5, Somalia, Central Asia, and agreed to coordinate closely in these areas.
Stefano Manservisi, the European Commission's Director General for International Cooperation and Development, and Kazuya Nashida, Assistant Minister, Director General of the International Cooperation Bureau at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Japan, co-chaired the meeting.
Japan is an important partner in development policy and cooperation. It provides almost 10 % of global ODA and has in the past few years expanded its development support beyond its traditional focus on Asia, notably to Africa. It is also actively involved in the international development agenda.
The negotiations to reach agreements on climate change, financing for development and the SDGs opened the door to increasing policy coordination and cooperation with Japan as a like-minded partner.
The implementation of this international agenda, as well as the uncertainties in the multilateral system, makes Japan a very important partner on development issues for the EU. Therefore, the European Commission and Japan meet once a year in order to discuss issues on the international development agenda and cooperation in this field.