Japanese Foreign Minister Fumio Kishida arrived in Yangon on March 23 on an official visit to Myanmar, in a fresh move to push the country’s relations with the Southeast Asian nation.

During his two-day visit, Kishida will meet President U Thein Sein and hold talks with his Myanmar counterpart U Wunna Maung Lwin to discuss ways to promote economic cooperation between the two sides.

Kishida’s visits aims to reaffirm Japan's support for economic and democratic reforms in Myanmar.

In an official visit to Nay Pyi Taw last May, Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe pledged 91 billion JPY (about 8,887 million USD) in assistance to Myanmar’s infrastructure projects in Thilawa Special Economic Zone along with aid for rural development, poverty reduction and human resources growth.

The Japanese government also waived the remaining 188.6 billion JPY debt for Myanmar.

In December last year, U Thein Sein visited Tokyo and attended the ASEAN-Japan Summit where Myanmar received another 63 billion JPY loan from Japan.

So far, Japan’s total aid to Myanmar topped 150 billion JPY.

According to official statistics, bilateral trade between the two countries totaled 1.4 billion USD in 2012. Japan stood in 10th place in Myanmar’s foreign investment line-up with a total investment of 301.11 million USD at the end of 2013./.