President Joe Biden and Japanese Prime Minister Yoshihide Suga, in the Rose Garden of the White House in Washington, April 16, 2021.

“Democracy”, “climate” … Words shunned for four years have returned to the Rose Garden of the White House, the usual setting, when weather permits, for the press conference that traditionally concludes the visits of foreign officials. Pandemic obliges, the American President, Joe Biden, had to wait nearly three months before receiving, Friday, April 16, a first visitor, the Japanese Prime Minister, Yoshihide Suga.

This choice confirms the priority given by the new administration to strengthening alliances in East Asia in the face of the challenge of the new Chinese power. Secretary of State Tony Blinken and Secretary of Defense Lloyd Austin made their first overseas trip to Japanese and South Korean allies in Washington in March. President Moon Jae-in will be the second visitor received in person by the Democrat during the first half of May.

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For their joint press conference, the agreement displayed by MM. Suga and Biden was near perfect. On the environmental issue, the president was pleased to see the prime minister join the United States in unveiling a new goal of reducing greenhouse gas emissions by 2030, one week before his big summit virtual climate. Joe Biden supported the Japanese head of government for maintaining the Olympic Games this summer in Tokyo, despite a fourth wave of Covid-19 and a slow-motion vaccination campaign in the Archipelago.

“Shared democratic standards”

“We are determined to work together to meet the challenges represented by China and on issues such as those of the East China Sea, the South China Sea, but also North Korea”, assured Joe Biden before reiterating a conviction often affirmed since his arrival at the White House: “We are working together to demonstrate that democracies can win the competitions of the XXIe century by bringing results for their peoples. “

The President of the United States has expressed a common desire to reinvest the technology front so that it is governed “By shared democratic standards (…), established by democracies and not by autocracies ”. He thus promised an investment in “Secure and reliable 5G networks”, semiconductors or artificial intelligence.

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