Prime Minister Shinzo Abe and his Czech counterpart, Bohuslav Sobotka, have agreed to begin talks on a treaty to start direct flights between their countries this year to mark the 60th anniversary of diplomatic relations.

During the meeting Tuesday at the Prime Minister’s Office in Tokyo, they also agreed to enhance dialogue and exchanges in the fields of science and technology and defense.

At a joint news conference after the meeting, Abe said Japan intends to cooperate with the Czech Republic to strike a broad deal on an economic partnership agreement with the European Union.

The same day, Abe and Sobotka attended a signing ceremony for a working holiday pact that allows young people from Japan to work in the Czech Republic and vice versa.

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