U.S. President Joe Biden and Japanese Prime Minister Yoshihide Suga showed their personal affinity for each other during a U.S.-Japan summit talk held in the White House on Friday (local time).
“It was a great honor having you as the first head of state in my administration,” said President Biden. Calling him “Yoshi,” the U.S. president said that they had a discussion over lunch and tea. “This is our first in-person meeting here, the first head of state that I've asked in my administration to come to the White House,” said President Biden, adding special meaning to his meet up with Prime Minister Suga. Describing Japan as a close ally and indispensable partner, Mr. Biden called Mr. Suga “Yoshi” before saying, “The floor is yours.”
In a joint press conference after the U.S.-Japan summit talk ended on Friday, Prime Minister Suga called the U.S. president “Joe,” referring to their joint efforts to ensure a free and open Indo-Pacific region. He would say to Mr. Biden, “Hey, Joe,” when the so-called Quad group – the Unites States, Japan, Australia and India - had an online meeting last month.
Prime Minister Suga remarked after the summit talk in the White House that he made significant progress in building mutual trust in his first meeting with President Biden. Suga recalled having a one-on-one talk with President Biden with only a translator at the table where hamburgers were served to the two heads of state. Suga said that he was so immersed in talking to Mr. Biden that he left most of his plate unfinished. As they have a lot in common as politicians with political career built from the bottom up, they will be able to keep improving their friendship over time with an open mind and an open heart, according to Mr. Suga.