Fact Sheet
Bureau of Oceans and International Environmental and Scientific Affairs
January 13, 2010

The Governments of the United States and Japan have held annual consultations on the use of the Global Positioning System (GPS) since 1998. The bilateral consultations alternate between Japan and the U.S. every year. This year, the consultations are being held at the Department of State in Washington, D.C. on January 13, 2010.

U.S.-Japan consultations on Global Positioning System technology are based upon the “Joint Statement by the Government of the United States of America and the Government of Japan on Cooperation in the Use of the Global Positioning System,” which was signed by former President Bill Clinton and former Prime Minister Keizou Obuchi in September 1998.

Japan has designed its Quasi-Zenith Satellite System (QZSS), a regional satellite navigation system, to be compatible and highly interoperable with the Global Positioning System.

The U.S. and Japan have signed agreements to establish Quasi-Zenith Satellite System monitoring stations on Guam and Hawaii in order to improve the accuracy of the system’s signals. The Guam station, which is located at a U.S. National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) weather facility, is operating in a test and check out mode, and the Hawaii station is in the final stages of construction at the National Aeronautics and Space Administration’s (NASA) facility at Kokee Park on the island of Kauai.

Both Governments affirm the importance of providing open access to space-based positioning, navigation and timing (PNT) services for peaceful purposes, free of direct user fees. The U.S. and Japan intend to continue bilateral cooperation in protecting spectrum for space-based PNT use as well as promoting standardization of common civil PNT signals.