The Japanese Prime Minister probed the EU's weakest link

One of the most important goals of Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe’s visit to the EU was search of support to strengthen his position for negotiations with the influential EU member states, RISS expert Julia KRYACHKINA considers.

“S.Abe needs to find the EU's weakest link. Despite serious relationship with European States, Japan had some disagreements with France and Germany even during the period of negotiations on the free trade area,” the orientalist said. S.Abe’s visit in Bulgaria, Romania, and Serbia was quite extraordinary. He became the first Japanese Prime Minister arrived on an official visit to these countries. During the trip he was accompanied by business representatives from 30 major Japanese corporations: IT companies and enterprises related to infrastructure projects and medical equipment. “It shows the importance of the economic component of S.Abe’s European tour,” the expert noted.

The visit of the Japanese delegation is also a way to check how European partners are ready to fulfill obligations under the free trade agreement. “This agreement is especially desirable for Japan against the background of problems with the draft of Trans-Pacific partnership, which should be implemented in 2019”, J.Kryachkina said.

There is a NATO center to combat cyber threats in Estonia, and Japan has been working closely with this center. It has a great experience in this field, and cyber department within the Defense Ministry is interested in cooperation with NATO. In particular, during the visit it was announced that Tokyo joined to the Estonian center as a permanent member and sent its staff for work to the center. “Through Estonia, there is a further strengthening of cooperation between Japan and NATO, in which S.Abe is so interested,” the analyst concluded.

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