Coinciding with the 50th anniversary of the friendly and cooperative relationship between Japan and ASEAN=Association of Southeast Asian Nations, a forum for further economic cooperation was held in Tokyo, and a memorandum of understanding was signed to support new businesses and decarbonization by startups.

ASEAN, which has 10 Southeast Asian member countries, is also known as the "growth center of the world," accounting for more than 8% of the world's population and trade value, and the friendly and cooperative relationship with Japan is celebrating 50 years this year.

In line with this, the forum began in Tokyo on May 5, and METI Minister Nishimura, who was in attendance, said, "Co-creation that leverages the strengths of both countries and creates the future based on trust is the direction we should aim for, with the rapidly growing ASEAN and the highly technological Japan."

At the forum, the ASEAN side signed a memorandum of understanding (MOU) to support the creation of new businesses by startups by JETRO=Japan Trade Organization, and an agreement between the government-affiliated insurance companies, Japan Export and Investment Insurance, and MUFG Bank to promote investment and financing using public and private funds to support the decarbonization of ASEAN.

The Government of Japan is scheduled to hold a Special Summit Meeting in December this year, inviting the leaders of ASEAN member countries to Japan, and intends to further strengthen its relationship with ASEAN through these efforts.