Japan said Saturday it would consider buying bonds issued by Europe's new permanent bailout fund in a bid to help soothe the eurozone's crippling debt crisis.
"We will consider buying them after carefully reviewing what Europe itself will be doing" on reforms, Finance Minister Koriki Jojima told a press briefing on the sidelines of the International Monetary Fund and World Bank's annual meetings in Tokyo.
Jojima said he told his French counterpart Pierre Moscovici that Tokyo may scoop up paper issued by the new 500 billion euro ($650 billion) European Stability Mechanism (ESM) "to help stabilise Europe's financial system".
The ESM was initially due to enter service on July 1 but became operational this month after it was delayed by a challenge at the German Constitutional Court.
Japan, which counts Europe as a major export market, had previously purchased billions of dollars in bonds issued by the ESM's predecessor emergency fund, the European Financial Stability Facility.