Japan-U.S. Defense Cost-Sharing Talks Unlikely to Start Soon

Politics

Tokyo, Aug. 13 (Jiji Press)--The Japanese government plans to wait until at least autumn this year before starting full-fledged talks with the United States on sharing costs for U.S. troops stationed in Japan, sources familiar with the matter said.

Japan sees no need to hurry before November’s U.S. presidential election and as similar cost-sharing talks between the United States and South Korea have been stalled, the sources said.

The talks between Tokyo and Washington will determine how much Japan will pay for U.S. troops in the country over the five years from fiscal 2021, which starts in April next year.

“Japanese officials believe that there is no need to act before the outcome of the U.S. presidential election is known,” a senior Foreign Ministry official said.

Presumptive Democratic presidential nominee Joe Biden, who is taking a lead over U.S. President Donald Trump in opinion polls, “puts more emphasis on relations with allies, including Japan, than Trump,” a Japanese government source said, suggesting that Tokyo should not act hastily.

[Copyright The Jiji Press, Ltd.]

Jiji Press