In a bid “to request an increase in crude oil production in light of the soaring energy prices associated with the prolonged crisis in Ukraine,” Prime Minister KISHIDA Fumio is considering visiting Saudi Arabia in late August, Japanese officials said.
Kishida plans to attend the 8th Tokyo International Conference on African Development (TICAD8) in Tunisia on August 27th and 28th.
After that, he will visit Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates (UAE), and Qatar, according to the officials.
The visit comes while China and Russia try strengthening relations with oil-producing countries in the Middle East. US President Joe Biden visited Saudi Arabia this month.
Prime Minister Kishida also met with Saudi Foreign Minister Prince Faisal bin Farhan Al Saud, who visited Japan on July 19, and asked for cooperation in stabilizing the crude oil market.
Japan depends heavily on oil from the Gulf states to generate energy. Saudi Arabia and the UAE provide about 75 percent of Japan’s crude oil needs.