Prime Minister Shinzo Abe said Monday that he spoke with South Korean President Park Geun-hye in Singapore and requested that Seoul arrange a trilateral summit with Beijing soon.

Addressing the Lower House Budget Committee, Abe said that in his brief conversation with Park during his trip to attend the state funeral of former Singapore Prime Minister Lee Kuan Yew, he praised her leadership in convening a March 21 meeting in Seoul of the Japanese, Chinese and South Korean foreign ministers.

Abe said he asked that South Korea, which currently holds the rotating chair of the trilateral framework, arrange a summit, saying he "expects the Japan-China-South Korea (foreign ministerial) meeting to be elevated to the leaders' level."