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Prime Minister Naoto Kan and Ukrainian President Viktor Yanukovych have agreed to promote investment as well as sharing of information and technology in the agricultural sector.

In a joint statement issued after they held talks in Tokyo on Tuesday, the leaders noted Ukraine has a “high potential for increasing agricultural production, grains in particular, which may positively contribute to the global balance of food supplies.”

To help in Ukraine’s economic development, they signed a deal for a loan from Japan worth up to ¥8 billion via the Japan Bank for International Cooperation.

Ukraine in return will offer a stable supply of farm products to Japan, according to the statement.

Kan and Yanukovych also decided to launch negotiations this year on a bilateral treaty on mutual promotion and protection of investments.

Yanukovych said his country has introduced corporate tax incentives for investments into specific sectors and takes a “special interest” in attracting Japanese investment in such sectors as coal mining and metallurgy, according to the statement.

Beyond economic issues, Kan and Yanukovych underlined the need to cooperate on curbing climate change, with the Ukrainian leader confirming his government’s commitment “to ensure the appropriate and transparent management” of state funds received from Japan for selling carbon emissions quotas under the Kyoto Protocol.

The promise comes in the wake of Yanukovych’s recent revelations on diversion of such funds by the former Ukrainian government.

The two leaders also reaffirmed working together in nuclear disarmament and nonproliferation, while Yanukovych threw his support behind Tokyo’s bid to become a permanent member of the U.N. Security Council, according to their joint statement.

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