Japan will support Philippines security needs - PH envoy

Japan will support Philippines security needs - PH envoy

Japan has always been known to be an ally of the Philippines.
But now, its been more vocal and public in its intention of providing the country with its security needs.

It reasons out that it wants the South China Sea to remain open to ensure the safe and free passage of its goods, this according to Philippine ambassador to Japan Jose Laurel V.

Photo provided by the Philippine Navy shows the BRP Andres Bonifacio along with US, Japan and India warships heading to Singapore during a naval drill.

Laurel adds that Tokyo depends on Manila because it is located in an area where its shipments of goods pass through.
Japan is very much aware that the Philippines is currently embroiled in a longstanding maritime row with another Asian giant –China over parts of the West Philippine Sea (WPS), where about $5 trillion worth of goods pass through every year.
Japan has also its fare share of problems with respect to its territories and not friendly neighbors surrounding it namely North Korea in the north, Russia in the northeast, and China in the west.

"When they go south, what is the first country they will reach there? Philippines. So Japan is a trading...country. It survives on selling their manufactured goods to the world. They have to keep the shipping lanes open. So their only way out is towards the south, keep the east Indian Ocean alive and get to Europe. If they want to get to the (US), then they have to travel towards the west coast of the United States," – Laurel said in a briefing.

"Well you must remember that because we are very intimate friends, Japan greatly also depends on the Philippines," he added.
Laurel said the shift in geo-politics in the area would prompt Japan to help the Philippines in terms of security.
"Japan will support the Philippines in its needs, particularly in security," he said, noting that the East Asian country has agreed to provide ten Coast Guard ships and other defense assets.
"That is why among others, Japan is very important not only to the Philippines. But the other countries also depend on them," he added.

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Report from PhilStar

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