Tokyo, Dec. 16 (Jiji Press)—Japan and Russia signed economic cooperation agreements in a wide range of fields on Friday that involve massive economic assistance from Japan to Russia.
The agreements, based on an eight-point economic cooperation plan proposed by Japan, cover 12 intergovernmental and 68 private-sector programs. The number of private-sector programs is nearly double the initially projected level.
The 80 programs, which cover fields such as energy, healthcare, and the development of the Russian Far East, involve ¥300 billion in Japanese investment and loans, the largest amount of Japanese economic assistance to Russia in history.
This is an unprecedented scale, Japanese Prime Minister Abe Shinzō told a press conference in Tokyo after a two-day summit meeting with Russian President Vladimir Putin. More Japanese companies are expected to launch operations in Russia.
The economic assistance is apparently intended to lay the groundwork for concessions from Moscow to resolve a long-standing territorial dispute between the two countries over four Russian-held northwestern Pacific islands.
[Copyright The Jiji Press, Ltd.]