The rise of emerging powers and a significant questioning of certain key pillars of the liberal order in some OECD countries bring uncertainty to the durability of the current international order. Despite its shortcomings, this open and rule-based international order has created conditions for reaching unprecedented levels of socioeconomic development across the world.

In this context, Europe and Japan should redouble their efforts to re-invest the features of the liberal order that favour inclusiveness and fairness. By doing so, they will make it less likely for rising powers to resort to force in order to secure their interests. Moreover, a joint reinforcement and improvement of the liberal order is the most effective strategy for facing both the daunting traditional threats to security, like the North Korean nuclear crisis, and the provision of global common goods as epitomised by the UN’s sustainable development goals. The call from Spain to deepen EU-Japan cooperation is very timely, since 2018 marks the 150th anniversary of the establishment of diplomatic relations between Spain and Japan.

Tuesday 6 February 2018, 9.30am-2pm. Fundación Botín, Castelló 18 C, Madrid (Spain).

See also: Europe-Japan cooperation for a rules-based international liberal order, ARI 10/2018, Mario Esteban and Luis Simón.