• Kyodo News


Prime Minister Naoto Kan and Serbian President Boris Tadic agreed that the two countries will boost interpersonal exchanges by easing visa requirements and work toward reforming the U.N. Security Council.

Kan and Tadic signed a joint statement after talks Tuesday in which Japan pledged to support Serbia’s accession to the European Union and Serbia backed Tokyo’s bid for a nonpermanent stint on the U.N. Security Council for two years starting in 2016.

The two leaders took note of growing business opportunities in Serbia, which has free-trade agreements with the European Union, Russia and Turkey.

After the signing ceremony, Kan told reporters that Japan is impressed with Belgrade’s efforts to promote reconciliation with its neighbors and expressed Japan’s readiness to strengthen political and economic cooperation.

He also said Japan will extend its first yen loan worth around ¥28.2 billion to Serbia to help curb air pollution and improve energy efficiency by constructing desulfurizing equipment at a thermal power plant.

On visa conditions, Kan welcomed Serbia’s short-stay visa waiver for Japanese nationals and confirmed that Japan will exempt visa requirements for short stays by Serbian nationals with valid biometric passports starting May 1.

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