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RIA Novosti

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Russia, Japan looking to resolve disputes through economic ties

09:54 12/05/2009
TOKYO, May 12 (RIA Novosti) - Russian Prime Minister Vladimir Putin said on Tuesday Moscow and Tokyo could resolve their existing territorial dispute by building mutual trust and developing strong economic ties.

Putin arrived in Tokyo on May 11 to discuss a long-standing territorial dispute, along with economic, energy and international issues with the Japanese leadership.

"With this attitude in mind, our mutual work will allow us to resolve a number of global issues, including the signing of a peace treaty [between Russia and Japan]," Putin told a Russian-Japanese business forum in Tokyo.

Russia and Japan have yet to sign a formal World War II peace treaty due to their territorial dispute over the four South Kuril Islands, former Japanese territory annexed by the Soviet Union after the war.

The Russian prime minister said both countries were interested in developing strong economic ties, primarily in the energy sector.

"Cooperation in the energy sector, which plays a key role in steady supplies of fuel-carriers to the Asian-Pacific region and strengthening the global energy security, remains our priority," Putin said.

Japan is one of Russia's major trading partners in Asia, ranking third in terms of bilateral trade. Last year trade turnover between Russia and Japan totaled almost $29 billion.

Japanese companies take part in two major energy projects in Russia's Far East - Sakhalin-I and Sakhalin-II.

"We launched an LNG plant in Sakhalin this February. The first shipments of liquefied natural gas have already arrived in Japan," the prime minister said.

He also confirmed that Russia and Japan would sign an agreement on cooperation in the civilian use of nuclear power, opening new possibilities for bilateral cooperation.

"I am certain that we will find new areas of mutual interest and we are ready to implement mutually beneficial projects," Putin said.

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RIA NovostiRussia, Japan looking to resolve disputes through economic ties

09:54 12/05/2009 Russian Prime Minister Vladimir Putin said on Tuesday Moscow and Tokyo could resolve their existing territorial dispute by building mutual trust and developing strong economic ties.>>

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