CULCON convened for CULCON XXIX virtually on October 17/18, 2021. The modified meeting format was a reminder of what has been lost through the pandemic, with engagement limited to a virtual platform, but it also spotlighted the resilience of the Panels and their determination to continue moving forward with their work by any means.
In letters to the CULCON Panels, the President of the United States and Japanese Prime Minister shared the hope that Japan and the United States will together continue to play a leading role in the Indo-Pacific region and around the world.
The Panels agreed to convene a binational ad hoc committee to examine possible topics including: 1) creating momentum in people-to-people and educational exchange; 2) nurturing next generation leadership to support the U.S.-Japan Alliance; 3) promoting shared values; 4) advancing digitization and broadening of information exchange between the two countries; 5) exploring local and regional interchanges and new platforms for subnational diplomacy; and 6) building economic resilience.
The Panelists dedicated their discussions at CULCON XXIX to topics that would inform the deliberations of the ad hoc committee. The overarching theme of the discussions was the impact of COVID, and they were divided into three sessions: (1) COVID and Local and Regional Diplomacy; (2) U.S.-Japan Cooperation: Supporting a Global COVID Response; and (3) The Impact of COVID on U.S.-Japan Interchange and Education.
For the Joint Statement and other background on CULCON XXIX, please click here.