TOKYO—Japanese Foreign Minister Yoshimasa Hayashi plans to visit Manila for Ferdinand Marcos Jr.'s June 30 inauguration as president of the Philippines, diplomatic sources said Tuesday.
Hayashi's attendance at a presidential inauguration there would be the first by a Japanese foreign minister since 2004, when Yoriko Kawaguchi was among the dignitaries. It comes as the Japanese government looks to build a relationship with the new Philippine administration amid China's active maritime advancement.
Japan and the United States are increasing their vigilance against Chinese military movements past what Beijing views as the "first island chain," a sea defense line stretching from the Japanese archipelago through Taiwan and the Philippines.
Japan and the United States regard the Philippines as having become an important focal point for regional security.
In addition to witnessing the inauguration, Hayashi is also making arrangements for talks with Marcos, and intends to confirm a partnership toward realizing a free and open Indo-Pacific region, the sources said, as China's aggressive pursuit of sovereignty claims in the South and East China seas has upset its neighbors.