According to the Japanese Ministry of Defence:
A free and open maritime order, which relies on the rule of law, is the foundation for the stability and prosperity of the international community.
As the Indo-Pacific region is the core of the world’s vitality supporting more than half the world’s population, it is especially vital for global stability and prosperity to realize the stable and autonomous development of this region.
At the same time, there are a number of challenges existing in the region, including in Japan’s vicinity, such as the rapid modernization of military forces and intensification of military activities.
In light of this situation, the Ministry of Defense/Japan Self-Defense Forces (MOD/JSDF) clearly states in the National Defense Program Guidelines (2018) that, “In line with the vision of free and open Indo-Pacific, Japan will strategically promote multifaceted and multilayered security cooperation, taking into account characteristics and situation specific to each region and country.
As part of such efforts, Japan will actively leverage its defense capability to work on defense cooperation and exchanges which include joint training and exercises, defense equipment and technology cooperation, capacity building assistance, and interchanges among military branches. The MOD/JSDF therefore aims to create a security environment favorable to Japan, through efforts to: (1) ensure the stable use of major sea lanes through defense cooperation and exchanges, (2) prevent contingencies through confidence building and mutual understanding, and (3) contribute to the peace and stability through activities in the region in cooperation with partner countries.indo_pacific_e