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José Manuel Durão Barroso

President of the European Commission

"Speaking points at the press conference of the EU-Japan Summit"

Figures and graphics available in PDF and WORD PROCESSED

EU-Japan Summit

Tokyo, 28 April 2010

Good evening. First I would like to warmly thank our Japanese Prime Minister it is a real pleasure to be in Tokyo on what has been a very productive day.

Our strategic partnership is a key one, to which I attach great importance. Europe and Japan have much in common. We share common values; we believe in and are committed to democracy, the rule of law and human rights. We are committed to market economy, sustainable development and social solidarity. Equally, we share common challenges. We therefore have a key common interest in facing them together.

I strongly value the willingness and readiness both sides have expressed today to tap the full potential of our partnership.

At the start of a new decade we need a fresh relationship based on results not rhetoric.

For example, it is clearly in our common interest to strengthen our economic integration in order to foster trade and investment. But we have to get it right. This means to work together on how to strengthen our economic relations in a balanced and mutually beneficial way.

I am confident that with political will we could achieve significant progress relatively quickly.

To reinforce our relationship does not serve only our strictly bilateral interests. It goes beyond. It is about our mutual interest in this increasingly fast-changing, interdependent and challenging world we live in as shown in our common endeavour in tackling climate change.

The global crisis has put our economies and societies under stress. This means that we have to be proactive and cooperate closely, especially within the G20 framework.

We have two important forthcoming G20 summits first in Toronto in June then in Seoul. We cannot miss these opportunities for global recovery and the reshaping of global economic governance.

Japan and the EU can together play a leading role on these issues.

Finally, let me stress that it is our responsibility to assure that all parts of the world participate in the recovery. The G20 brings together the most important traditional and new donors, which makes it a suitable platform for broad-based initiatives on development. And this should be fully explored.

The European Commission is making solid and rapid progress with the ECB, the IMF and the Greek authorities to finalise the Greek adjustment programme. The Commission expects this work to be finalized in the coming days.

On this basis, the Euro area members will take the decision on the activation of the financial support, as decided by the Heads of State and Government of the Euro area on 25 March and specified by the Eurogroup on 11 April.

All euro-area Member States are finalizing the procedures that will allow them to provide financial support to Greece as necessary.

The euro-area Member States, the Commission, the ECB [and the IMF] are determined to guarantee the overall financial stability of the euro area.

There is no doubt that Greece's needs will be met in time.

Debt restructuring in an euro-area Member State is not an option and is not going to be part of the joint programme.

Amongst all the speculation, I would like to remind you that the European Commission has already taken action to put in place a regulatory framework on credit-rating agencies, and will continue to watch closely the behaviour of the financial markets during this crisis.

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