(Reuters) – South Korean President Yoon Suk Yeol and Japanese Prime Minister Fumio Kishida promised to push for deeper cooperation as they met on the sidelines of the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) summit in San Francisco, Yonhap news agency reported on Thursday.
“This year bilateral cooperation is deepening with the reactivation of exchanges at each level, including at the summit level, and the restoration of consultation bodies between our governments,” Yoon said, according to Yonhap.
Kishida said he hopes to push forward with cooperation in politics, security guarantees, the economy and culture, the report said.
The pair met on Thursday, a day before they were due to attend a roundtable on technological cooperation at Stanford University.
They are expected to announce a joint supply network for carbon-neutral fuels such as hydrogen and ammonia, the Nikkei business daily has reported.
Yoon has made it a priority to mend ties with Japan since taking office in May 2022, and to restore trilateral security cooperation with the United States as North Korea ramps up its weapons programs and openly threatens the South.
The moves have not always been popular at home, where many South Koreans believe Japan has not done enough to atone for its sometimes brutal 1910-1945 occupation of the Korean peninsula.
Yoon and Kishida held a summit with U.S. President Joe Biden in August, pledging to deepen military and economic cooperation and restore an alliance aimed at countering North Korea’s threats as well as China’s growing influence.
(Reporting by Josh Smith in Seoul; Editing by Josie Kao)