Apparently, personal relations between the leaders of our countries - Prime Minister Koizumi Junichiro and President Vladimir Putin-have developed well. They held informal talks during international meetings 5 times. In January 2003, Prime Minister Koizumi paid an official visit to Russia and spoke for an hour and a half with President Putin in his Kremlin office, and in May of the same year visited St. Petersburg. The second official visit of the Russian president to Japan is planned for 2005. Good relations have developed not only between the leaders themselves, but also at the government level. The exchange of visits and negotiations between Foreign Ministers Kawaguchi, Ivanov and his successor Lavrov, as well as the heads of national defense departments, can be considered quite successful. Joint programs on security issues have been developed, which until recently, during the Cold War, was impossible to imagine. In general, relations between our countries are developing smoothly. Former Russian Ambassador to Japan Alexander Panov concluded that today, with the exception of the territorial issue, there are no acute and unsolvable problems in them, and that relations have thus reached a period of good neighborliness. Ambassadors usually try to emphasize the positive aspects in relations between their country and the one in which they are accredited, because the state of these relations is at least partially on their conscience. Without disputing the above, I note that Japanese-Russian relations cannot be seen in pink alone. To put it bluntly, these relations have not yet reached the proper level. Here are some examples. Japan's share is 3% in Russia's foreign trade balance, while Russia's share in Japan's foreign trade balance is 0.6%, compared to 25% for the United States and 8.4% for China. In 2002, 15 million Japanese went abroad, but the number of visitors to Russia did not exceed 70 thousand. Some people think that maintaining this state of affairs should not ... Read more

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China Online
Beijing, China
03.06.2024 (42 days ago)
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