Japan and the Soviet Union signed a new five-year trade agreement in Tokyo on Monday (30 May).
Japan and the Soviet Union signed a new five-year trade agreement in Tokyo on Monday (30 May). The signing had been delayed over an incident last September when a Soviet pilot flew a top secret Mig-25 jet fighter to Japan.
SYNOPSIS: The Soviet delegation for the signing at the Japanese Foreign Ministry was led by Nikolai Patolichev -- the Soviet Foreign Trade Minister. The agreement was signed for Japan by Foreign Minister -- Iichairo Hatoyama. The old five-year trade agreement expired in 1975 and negotiations to renew the pact were concluded in November last year. But the signing was delayed after relations cooled between the two countries over the Mig-25 incident.
Japan refused to return the aircraft to the Soviet Union before it had been examined by United States and Japanese experts. The Soviet pilot was also granted political asylum in the United States despite strong protests from the Russians. Another problem for Russo-Japanese relations has been a tough series of fisheries talks. The countries laid claim to certain fishing areas but they finally reached agreement on the matter in the middle of May. The new trade agreement was seen as a partial thaw of the strained relations.