TOKYO - Senate President Aquilino "Koko" Pimentel III and key members of the Japanese Diet agreed to further deepen Philippine-Japan inter-parliamentary exchanges support the momentum of bilateral relations, in separate meetings at the Diet premises on February 17 in Tokyo.

Senate President Pimentel met with Upper House members Councillor Hirofumi Nakasone and Councillor Takuji Yanagimoto.

Senate President Pimentel conveyed the Philippines' interest in working with Japan to further enhance regional-level inter-parliamentary exchanges under such frameworks as the Asia-Pacific Parliamentary Forum (APPF) and the ASEAN Inter-Parliamentarians Assembly (AIPA). The Philippines is hosting the AIPA Assembly in Manila this 2017.

Councillor Nakasone, one of the leading advocates of inter-parliamentary cooperation in the Japanese parliament, welcomed the Senate President's expression of commitment and interest. Councillor Nakasone has been chair of the Japan-ASEAN Inter-Parliamentary Exchange Group in the Japanese Upper House since 2007. His father, former Japanese Prime Minister Yasuhiro Nakasone, was founding APPF President and remains Honorary President of the Assembly.

Senate President Pimentel also met with senior Japanese legislators affiliated with the Japan-Philippines Parliamentarians Friendship League (JPPFL).

Led by Chairman Hon. Nobuteru Ishihara, Representative for Tokyo's Eighth District and concurrently Minister for Economic Revitalization, the JPPFL members reaffirmed their support for the bilateral Strategic Partnership, as well as for Japanese development and infrastructure assistance to the Philippines. Both sides agreed to strengthen their lines of communication through regular dialogues and reciprocal visits.

Accompanying Minister Ishihara were JPPFL officials Rep. Taku Otsuka, Rep. Hirofumi Ryu, Councillor Satoshi Ninoyu and Councillor Masayoshi Nataniya.

Founded in 1986, the JPPFL brings together Japanese Diet members from both Houses of the Japanese Diet and across party lines in support of Japan's relations and cooperation with the Philippines. END

Source: Republic of Philippines Department Of Foreign Affairs