The Abraham Accords Can Help Japan Develop Better Relations with the Middle East

July 25, 2023 | Gedaliah Afterman and Yossi Mann
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Last week, the Japanese prime minister Fumio Kishida visited the Persian Gulf, meeting with the leaders of Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates, and Qatar. During the trip, he concluded deals for cooperation in technology, green energy, mining, and the exporting of natural gas—alongside discussions of security and diplomatic cooperation. Gedaliah Afterman and Yossi Mann suggest some further steps for Tokyo to take, which include taking advantage of the region’s demand for video games:

Despite their leading positions in the global market, Japanese gaming companies have been noticeably absent from the Middle East. While ultimately this is a matter for the companies themselves, Tokyo could encourage them with a policy framework and other initiatives.

For instance, it could organize a series of public events around the Gulf with various gaming companies. Tokyo could also seek to include gaming in future cooperation agreements in the region. In adapting leading games for the Middle Eastern market, Japanese companies may want to cooperate with Israeli technology developers active in artificial intelligence and natural-language processing.

By building on the new regional dynamic created by the Abraham Accords that normalized relations between Israel on one side and the UAE and several other Muslim states on the other, Japan can position itself as a significant player in shaping the future.

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