However, he added, "Frankly speaking, I was disappointed when I heard your remarks in the EAS foreign ministers' meeting today".
The 50-year-old regional organization has been criticized for its consensus style of decision-making, with analysts saying it hampers effective decision-making.
The Kono statement represents the sincerity of Japan, Wang said.
The final version of the communique "emphasised the importance of non-militarisation and self-restraint".
"But the problem of territorial disputes between China and the Philippines is between China and the Philippines".
Chinese Minister of Foreign Affairs Wang Yi (王毅) on Sunday said that hinged on whether the situation was stable, and if there was no "major interference" from outsiders.
Mr Sokhonn questioned why land reclamation had been introduced in later drafts. A page-one editorial (link in Chinese) in the overseas edition of the state-run People's Daily argues the US and South Korea should suspend military exercises in the area.
"So there were three issues that we agreed on the words land reclamation", he said.
Cayetano reiterated that while they have the same goals as the previous administration, they are using a different strategy.
They also approved activities for 2017-18, with Việt Nam chairing two conferences on co-operation among law enforcement agencies at sea and capacity building for peacekeeping forces. The administration is also mulling joint development activities with China in the area.
There was no mention at all of the ruling past year of the Permanent Court of Arbitration in the Hague on the UN Convention on the Law of the Sea (UNCLOS) which rejected China's claim to sovereignty over most of the South China Sea. He was apparently referring to the U.S., which China has, for the longest time, accused of meddling in what it says is an Asian dispute that should be resolved only by the countries involved.
We want to hear from you. As in past criticisms, they did not cite China by name. "Surely when we move into the COC, it has got to have some additional or significant legal effect".
But now, China argues, it's time for other nations to do their part.
In this EPA photo, U.S. Secretary of State Rex Tillerson speaks to reporters at a hotel in Manila, the Philippines, on August 7, 2017.
Bolivar said they expect a paragraph in AMM Chairman Statement reflecting the adoption of the COC framework.
As next year marks the 15th anniversary of China and Asean establishing their strategic partnership, Xi said China would like to take the year as an opportunity to appreciate all that has been accomplished and look at what can be done over the long run. That means, in China's mind, no longer allowing the USA to station a Terminal High Altitude Area Defense (Thaad) antimissile system on its soil.
Later Monday, Kono, who is said to have connections with USA officials and lawmakers, held a news conference for foreign reporters at the worldwide media center, also a rare move for Japan's top diplomat.
"The President has stated on many occasions that the Philippines will respect the arbitral tribunal and will raise it with relevant sides at the proper time".