US and Japanese fighter jets have carried out joint air exercises, according to an official, just days after Chinese and Japanese military jets shadowed each other near disputed islands in the East China Sea.

The five-day exercise involved six US FA-18 fighters and around 90 American personnel, along with four Japanese F-4 jets and an unspecified number of people, the official said on Tuesday.

The drill was carried out over Pacific waters off the coast of Shikoku, the fourth largest of Japan's islands.