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Kishida wins funding for six new embassies, two new consulates

Kyodo

Foreign Minister Fumio Kishida and Finance Minister Taro Aso have agreed to open six new embassies and two consulates under the fiscal 2015 budget.

It will be the most overseas facilities ever approved at one time, Kishida said Sunday.

Embassies will be established in the Maldives, Solomon Islands, Barbados, Tajikistan, Turkmenistan and Moldova, and the first new consulates in seven years will be set up in Leon in central Mexico and Hamburg in Germany, he said after holding budget talks with Aso.

Japan is trying to enhance its diplomatic influence and better communicate its views overseas this year as the world marks 70 years since the end of World War II.

The Foreign Ministry originally requested nine new embassies and six new consulates.

Aso and Kishida also agreed to fund the establishment of “Japan House” facilities in London, Los Angeles and Sao Paulo to help popularize Japanese culture abroad, and to set aside ¥3.5 billion in the budget for overseas financial assistance, including for countries that no longer receive official development assistance.