Prime Minister Fumio Kishida and French Prime Minister Gabriel Attal on Wednesday agreed to expand bilateral ties in various fields, including the economy, security and culture.

During their meeting in Paris, the two leaders shared hopes for increased people-to-people exchanges through this summer's Paris Olympic and Paralympic Games and the 2025 World Exposition in Osaka.

Attal expressed his condolences over the recent death of renowned Japanese manga artist Akira Toriyama, saying that many French people are familiar with his works such as the "Dragon Ball" series. He mourned Toriyama's death with a post on X.

Kishida gave Attal a kokeshi traditional Japanese wooden doll based on a character from "Dragon Ball."

On Thursday, Kishida is set to deliver a keynote speech at a ministerial council meeting of the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development and meet with French President Emmanuel Macron.

Separately, economy minister Ken Saito and his French counterpart, Bruno Le Maire, met on Wednesday and agreed that the two countries will strengthen cooperation over the supply of critical minerals including rare earths.

Under the agreement, Japan and France will share information on supply chains, and mining and smelting technologies, and advance collaboration with companies and investors to ensure stable supply of critical minerals.

It is crucial to build critical mineral supply chains that are resilient, strong and transparent, the two ministers said in a joint statement signed at a meeting in Paris.

The ministers agreed that Japan and France will promote dialogue involving companies and advance discussions on providing aid to resource-rich countries.

Critical minerals, used in such products as batteries for electric vehicles, are becoming increasingly important in terms of economic security because only a few countries are able to produce them.