National / Politics

Japan, France sign agreement to share defense supplies, deepening military ties

Kyodo

Japan and France have inked a bilateral agreement to share defense and other supplies to deepen security cooperation.

Under the acquisition and cross-servicing agreement, the fourth of its kind for Japan, the Self-Defense Forces and the French armed forces can provide items such as food, water, fuel and ammunition to each other.

Japan has similar arrangements with the United States, Australia and Britain.

The signing came Friday as Foreign Minister Taro Kono visited France on behalf of Prime Minister Shinzo Abe, who canceled his trip in the wake of the deadly torrential rains in western Japan.

Japan is seeking to beef up maritime security cooperation with France as part of its push to maintain a free and open Indo-Pacific region.

In January, the foreign and defense ministers of Japan and France agreed on a framework for the ACSA agreement.