EU- Japan connectivity promises

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Series Details 2021/22, Number 22
Publication Date 2021
ISBN 978-92-9084-988-9
ISSN 2467-4540
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A strategic approach is now being taken towards EU-Japan cooperation in the field of politics, development, strategy and security. Despite diverse political and administrative cultures that have slowed the process, it is moving forward. COVID19 and the impossibility of meeting face to face has impaired communication but, at the same time, provisions to cope with the negative economic impact of the virus have led to record high government budgets and stimulus packages. Financial resources that can be used for new Japanese and EU projects and ideas are thus available. A Partnership on Sustainable Connectivity and Quality Infrastructure was signed between the EU and Japan in September 2019. This Partnership Agreement, which is also designed to encourage projects in other countries, covers sectors from transport and energy to digital industries. It calls for ‘transparent procurement practises, assurance of debt sustainability and high standards of economic, fiscal, financial, social and environmental sustainability’. Coupled with ODA (Official Development Assistance), which would be necessary for its implementation in the developing world, this partnership can make a difference. Our paper will begin by presenting a short historical background of EU-Japan relations. This will be followed by an account of the development of recent years and finally, by a focus on the Partnership on Sustainable Connectivity and Quality Infrastructure. The meaning of Infrastructure Connectivity both for EU and Japan, as well as for China, will be analysed. Then we will venture into the implementation phase of the Partnership and finally we will offer policy advice.

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