SPEAKER Martin G. Romualdez during the opening of the 19th Congress at the House of Representatives in Quezon City on July 25, 2022. — PHILIPPINE STAR/KRIZ JOHN ROSALES

JAPAN remains committed to enhancing defense and security ties with the Philippines, Speaker and Leyte Rep. Ferdinand Martin G. Romualdez said on Tuesday after meeting with his Japanese counterpart Fukushiro Nukaga.

“Our relationship is at an all-time high, with the recent signing not just of the trilateral agreement, but of our relationship, of our strategic partnership,” he said in a statement.

“[It is] very important to promote cooperation among the three countries for the security, safety, and stability of the region,” he added.

Tensions between the Philippines and China have worsened in the past year amid Beijing’s growing assertiveness in the South China Sea.

Mr. Romualdez met with Mr. Nukaga in Tokyo on June 18, according to his office.

Japan and the Philippines share the view that regional security should be maintained, which is the basis of their “very good bilateral relations,” Mr. Nukaga told Mr. Romualdez during their meeting, according to the statement.   

Regional security must be based on international law, he added.

“The alliance between Japan and the United States is strong and built on trust,” Mr. Nukaga said. “It is very important to promote cooperation among our three countries to ensure safe maritime transport and the safety and stability of the region.” — Kenneth Christiane L. Basilio