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Last Update : Tuesday, Nov 8, 2016

JapanGov Weekly

Cabinet Secretariat [Thursday, Oct 27, 2016]

Japan-Jordan Summit Meeting and Other Events

Prime Minister Shinzo Abe hosted a summit meeting and other events with His Majesty King Abdullah II Ibn Al Hussein, King of the Hashemite Kingdom of Jordan, at Akasaka Palace State Guest House.
The two leaders attended a salute and ceremony by the guard of honor and then held a summit meeting. After that, the leaders attended a signing ceremony and held a joint press announcement.

Cabinet Secretariat [Wednesday, Oct 26, 2016]

Japan-Philippines Summit Meeting and Other Events

Prime Minister Shinzo Abe hosted a summit meeting and other events with H.E. Mr. Rodrigo Roa Duterte, President of the Republic of the Philippines, at the Prime Minister’s Office.

The two leaders attended a salute and ceremony by the guard of honor followed by a summit meeting. After that, they attended a signing ceremony and an exchange of documents, and held a joint press announcement.

Lastly, the Prime Minister hosted a dinner banquet and said the following in his address,

“I would like to once again offer my heartfelt welcome to President Duterte upon his visit to Japan.

First, I would like to apologize for keeping all of you invited here today waiting for 30 minutes. My discussion with President Duterte lasted longer than anticipated, and I hope that you will all understand that it was because we were having such a lively discussion. President Duterte and I had a truly significant conversation, although I cannot discuss the content at present. .

This year marks the 60th anniversary of the normalization of diplomatic relations between Japan and the Philippines. During this wonderful commemorative year, in January Their Majesties the Emperor and Empress of Japan visited the Philippines. And now, President Duterte, who is very friendly toward Japan, is visiting Japan shortly after his inauguration. I warmly welcome him. The deep, close relationship between Japan and the Philippines is like that of a family or siblings. With President Duterte, I would like to develop a broad flourishing future for both our countries.

I have heard that President Duterte has a strong liking for Japanese food. Our hospitality this evening features Japanese cuisine. If the President likes it, I hope that he will come back to Japan many times to enjoy Japanese cooking.

President Duterte served for many years as the Mayor of Davao City and, in that capacity, he has attended the receptions hosted by Japan’s consular office to celebrate the Emperor’s birthday several times. Japan also greatly values Mindanao, and has been supporting it for many years. We have invited a number of people with a link to Mindanao to the banquet this evening.

José Rizal, hero of the people of the Philippines, traveled in his youth to many parts of Japan, and left writings stating his view that in the future the two countries would have a wide range of exchanges and relations. That is now truly the case; the relationship between Japan and the Philippines has greatly developed in a wide range of fields, including politics, the economy, culture, and personal exchanges.

We have invited to this evening’s banquet leaders from many different places, all of whom are supporting the invaluable friendship between our two countries in a variety of different fields. It is thanks to all of your contributions that Japan and the Philippines have such a wonderful friendship right now. I would like to take this opportunity to express my sincere gratitude to you all, and to say that I would be grateful for your continuing support to further strengthen our bilateral relationship.

I would now like to raise a toast to the health and happiness of President Duterte and everyone here, and to the further development of friendship and cooperation between the peoples of Japan and the Philippines. Mabuhay!”

Cabinet Secretariat [Sunday, Oct 30, 2016]

Visit to Miyagi Prefecture

Prime Minister Shinzo Abe visited Miyagi Prefecture.

First, Prime Minister Abe participated in the Minamisanriku Town Industrial Fair in Minamisanriku Town, Miyagi Prefecture, before attending the opening ceremony for the Tome-Shizugawa section of the Sanriku Coast Road.

Afterwards, the Prime Minister visited a company involved with the reconstruction of tourism and a non-profit organization (NPO) that provides a workplace where mothers can bring their children, both in Kesennuma City.

After his visit, the Prime Minister said,

“This time marks my 30th visit to the areas affected by the Great East Japan Earthquake. I have visited Minamisanriku and Kesennuma several times, including when the Liberal Democratic Party (LDP) was an opposition party. I have made several visits to the reconstruction market in Minamisanriku that started right after the disaster struck. I have also visited Minamisanriku Sun Sun Shopping Village. From next March, at long last, they will move from temporary facilities into their permanent facilities, signaling a new start for the shopping village. I am overjoyed to see how reconstruction is making forward progress.

I helped to pass out mochi rice cakes earlier. It was invigorating to see how happy the children were and the animated smiling faces of the elderly. Today, we opened the Sanriku Coast Road. By all means, I hope that people from across the country will visit Minamisanriku. I have had the pleasure of enjoying some delicious salmon soup and squid here. I hope that everyone will come and enjoy this area’s delicious food and beautiful scenery.

By 2020, 90% of this road, from Sendai to Hachinohe, will finally be open, and it will be possible to reach Kesennuma from Tokyo via expressway. In Kesennuma, I ate swordfish. I hope that more and more people will visit to enjoy many attractions including this kind of delicious food. With this road’s opening as a catalyst, we will increase the number of foreign tourists to this area to three times the current level by 2020. The Government will thoroughly support this plan.

In Kesennuma, a variety of initiatives are being carried out to utilize the fisheries industry for tourism. I could feel the passion of everyone here, for example from the ingenuity of these participatory tourism experiences. I look forward to the day when many people visit Kesennuma through such initiatives.

Furthermore, I am holding this press conference at a new workplace that allows mothers to bring their children with them when they work. I think this is a wonderful initiative, especially viewing it from the perspective of work style reform. We are seeing the start of these kinds of programs, as well as various initiatives for the revitalization of employment. The Government will thoroughly support these efforts, including through subsidies.”

In addition, in response to a question about the holding of the Olympic Games in regions affected by the Great East Japan Earthquake, the Prime Minister said,

“When I met with President Bach of the International Olympic Committee (IOC) at the Prime Minister’s Office earlier this month, I said that I wanted to make the 2020 Tokyo Olympic and Paralympic Games into an event that can demonstrate to the world how the affected areas have recovered from that large-scale disaster. I also said that I want to support reconstruction through the power of sports. I explained that all of this represented the kind of Olympic and Paralympic Games I wanted to hold. President Bach said that he was considering holding several events in the areas affected by the disaster based on that perspective. I want to respond to this issue and work on it while closely collaborating with the Tokyo Metropolitan Government and Tokyo Organising Committee of the Olympic and Paralympic Games. I have also heard that several proposals will be offered this week by the Tokyo Metropolitan Government on the venues for canoeing, rowing, and other events. There will be four-party talks on proposals from President Bach, with these talks comprising the IOC, the Organising Committee, the Tokyo Metropolitan Government, and the national Government. I hope to have thorough discussion on the proposals in those talks.”

Cabinet Secretariat [Wednesday, Oct 26, 2016]

The Prime Minister Attends the Opening Ceremony of the Tokyo International Film Festival

Prime Minister Shinzo Abe attended the opening ceremony of the 29th Tokyo International Film Festival (TIFF), held in Tokyo.

The Prime Minister said in his address,

“Good evening. My name is Shinzo Abe.

The Tokyo International Film Festival is now underway. I first attended this Festival 10 years ago. Although I was unable to attend for five years, this year marks the fourth straight year that I have been able to be here.

The Tokyo International Film Festival has come to attract great attention as a leading film festival in Asia. It drives home to me once again the importance of perseverance. The attention of creators from Asia and around the world is being focused on the Festival. The Abe administration has established measures to make Japan a gateway for Asia and the entire world. Young people from all over Asia come to Tokyo to present their work to the world, and people from around the world come to Tokyo to learn about Asia. I am very pleased that the Festival has developed into such an institution.

I understand that the popular Shin Godzilla (also known as Godzilla Resurgence in some countries) will be screened here. My wife has been strongly encouraging me to watch it, saying that ‘the movie is pretty realistic.’ However, apparently the prime minister is killed in the first half of the movie, together with the chief cabinet secretary. Deputy Chief Cabinet Secretary Hagiuda has been ardently urging me to see the movie while opining that “it is very informative,” and I heard that the deputy chief cabinet secretary has an active part in the story. So I definitely want to see the movie.

I believe that we are entering into an era in which Japanese movies are highly esteemed throughout the world. Films are culture, and are very useful for learning about the countries that produce them. We will focus efforts on films and support them as a major source of Japanese soft power. I hope that you will all enjoy yourselves at the Tokyo International Film Festival, and find ways to broadcast the appeal of films.

Thank you very much, and congratulations on this opening day.”

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Cabinet Secretariat [Monday, Oct 31, 2016]

Courtesy Call from Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine Recipient Dr. Yoshinori Ohsumi

Prime Minister Shinzo Abe received a courtesy call from Dr. Yoshinori Ohsumi, Honorary Professor at Tokyo Institute of Technology , recipient of the Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine, at the Prime Minister’s Office.

Cabinet Secretariat [Thursday, Oct 27, 2016]

Statement by Prime Minister Shinzo Abe on the Passing of His Imperial Highness Prince Mikasa

It is with great sorrow that I have learned of the passing of His Imperial Highness Prince Mikasa.

His Imperial Highness was born as the fourth son of Emperor Taisho, and for many years from the Showa era onward he assisted both his elder brother Emperor Showa and later His Majesty the Emperor, contributing to the peace of the nation and the welfare of the people. As a member of the Imperial Family, His Imperial Highness fulfilled an important role in a broad range of fields, particularly in the promotion of international goodwill, sports, recreation, art, culture, medical care, and welfare. His Imperial Highness always interacted warmly with the people of Japan, offering his encouragement to people involved in various commemorative ceremonies and events he attended.

His Imperial Highness was also a distinguished researcher of ancient oriental history.

In his later years, His Imperial Highness spent his days peacefully and in good health and last year celebrated his 100th birthday. The people of Japan were hoping that His Imperial Highness would continue to live for many years to come, and it leaves us in unbearable sorrow that with the passing of His Imperial Highness these hopes could not be realized.

Extending my deepest sympathy to the members of the Imperial Household and other close relatives of His Imperial Highness, together with the people of Japan I would like to express my heartfelt condolences.