PASAY CITY, 25 October 2021 — The Philippines held its 4th Maritime Dialogue with Japan on 22 October 2021, where both countries tackled issues on the security situation in the region, including the East and South China Seas, and Sulu Celebes Sea, updates on maritime law enforcement, defense and coast guard cooperation, fisheries, marine environment, and maritime domain awareness.
DFA Maritime and Ocean Affairs’ Assistant Secretary Maria Angela A. Ponce led the Philippine delegation, while the Japanese delegation was led by Deputy Director-General Ishizuki Hideo of the Southeast and Southwest Asian Affairs of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs.
The Dialogue was convened to commemorate the 10th anniversary of the Philippines-Japan Bilateral Strategic Partnership, and the 65th anniversary of the normalization of diplomatic relations between the two countries.
Both sides emphasized the importance of conducting activities at sea in accordance with international law, including the UN Convention on the Law of the Sea. They also reaffirmed the 2016 Award on the South China Sea arbitration as final and binding international law that strengthens the legal order over the seas.
The Philippines and Japan committed to further deepen and expand maritime cooperation in efforts to strengthen bilateral relations, and to continue coordination on maritime-related issues of mutual interest.