The Ambassador of Japan, Mr. Kenjiro Monji, hosted yesterday evening a reception at his Residence to celebrate the 79th birthday of His Majesty Emperor of Japan.
H.E. Dr. Hamad Bin Abdulaziz Al-Kuwari, Minister of Culture, Arts & Heritage attended the reception as the guest of honor.
The celebration started with the national anthems of the State of Qatar and Japan followed by a welcome speech by H.E. Ambassador Monji through which he highlighted the developments that have taken place in Japan-Qatar bilateral relationship in various areas including diplomacy, defense, economy, culture, education science and technology, sport and tourism etc. The Ambassador emphasized the significant achievement attained as an outcome of the project “Qatar Japan 2012” that was launched upon the initiative of H.E. Sheikha Al Mayassa Bint Hamad Bin Khalifa Al-Thani, Chairperson of Qatar Museums Authority.
Regarding economic cooperation between the two countries, H.E. Mr.Monji expected that Japanese companies could contribute to the preparation for FIFA World Cup 2022 and the achievements of objectives set by Qatar National Vision 2030.
Furthermore, Ambassador Monji praised Qatar for its active and consistent effort to help resolve regional conflicts and for promoting international cooperation by hosting many important conferences such as COP18.
He concluded his remark by wishing good health and happiness to H.H. the Emir and His Majesty the Emperor as well as to the friendly people of both countries.
After the speech, H.E. Dr. Al-Kuwari and Ambassador Monji graced the grand cake-cutting ceremony with huge applauds from the invitees who greatly enjoyed the Japanese authentic food that was served for the occasion.
The reception was attended by the representative of the government of Qatar and hundreds of dignitaries from various governmental and private organizations, diplomatic corps, Japanese community as well as the local and international media personnel in Qatar.
Speech by Japanese Ambassdor
H.E. Dr. Hamad Bin Abdulaziz Al-Kuwari, Minister of Culture, Arts and Heritage,
Ladies and Gentlemen,
I would like to welcome you all to the reception to celebrate the 79th birthday of His Majesty the Emperor of Japan. I especially appreciate the presence of H.E. Dr. Hamad Bin Abudulaziz Al Kuwari, Minister of Culture, Arts and Heritage.
2012 has witnessed further development in Japan-Qatar bilateral relationship. The most remarkable accomplishment was the joint project “Qatar Japan 2012” designated to celebrate the 40th anniversary of our diplomatic relations. I would like to express my gratitude to H.E. Sheikha Al Mayassa Bint Hamad Bin Khalifa Al-Thani, Chairperson of Qatar Museums Authority, to take the initiative of launching the project. My special thanks also go to the Ministry of Culture, Arts and Heritage and many other organizations in Qatar that participated in the project with the Embassy of Japan.
Under “Qatar Japan 2012” many visits, events and exchange activities took place in such various areas as diplomacy, defense, economy, culture, education, science and technology, sport, tourism, etc. As has been agreed upon between the two Governments, we are moving forward to make our bilateral relations much broader and more diversified beyond economy, especially energy.
We had many important political visits in both directions including a visit by H.E. Mr. Koichiro Gemba, Japanese Foreign Minister, and three visits by H.E. Mr. Abdullah Bin Hamad Al-Attiya, Chairman of the Administrative Control and Transparency Authority.
In terms of economy, Japan continues to be the biggest trading partner of Qatar with the total amount of trade reaching US$31 billion in 2011 with the increased LNG import from Qatar. Moreover, the importance of Qatar as a major energy supplier will be elevated in the future in view of Japan’s new energy policy adopted after the nuclear accident last year.
In order to promote the participation of Japanese companies to the grandiose infrastructure projects in Qatar, many conferences, forum and seminars were held in both countries such as the 7th Joint Economic Committee, two seminars on water and wastewater technology, Qatar business seminar, etc. Furthermore, I am convinced that Japanese companies can contribute to the preparation for FIFA World Cup 2022 and the achievement of objectives set by Qatar National Vision 2030.
Culture and education are the areas to which both Japan and Qatar attach special importance. I hope that the cooperation in the educational field will be promoted in such areas as the exchange of students and the Japanese language education in Qatar that made a good start in September with the kind support of Supreme Education Council.
Thanks to “Qatar Japan 2012”, people in Qatar were exposed to Japan through a number of Japan related events ranging from the traditional culture to the contemporary arts such as drum, dance, music, theater, kimono, photography, film and the brilliant Murakami Takashi. Qatar also is getting to be well known in Japan through “Qatar Week –Ferjaan in Tokyo” that attracted more than 25,000 visitors.
The concluding event of “Qatar Japan 2012” is the Japan booth at the Doha International Book Fair in which Japan will participate as the guest of honor upon the kind nomination made by H.E. Minister Al Kuwari. In addition to the sale and display of books, our main feature will be Japan’s Pop Culture including anime, manga, fashion and music. Please come and enjoy Japan at the Book Fair. Just a reminder, the Fair will take place at Doha Exhibition Center from 12 to 22 December.
Qatar also made remarkable achievements in various areas in 2012 under the leadership of His Highness the Emir, Sheikh Hamad Bin Khalifa Al-Thani. It continues to demonstrate spectacular economic performances.
In diplomacy, I am intensely impressed with Qatar’s active and consistent effort to help resolve regional conflicts, especially in Darfur, Palestine and Syria, as well as to play a vital role in international cooperation by hosting many important conferences such as UNCTAD, UPU, WISE and most recently COP18. Allow me to congratulate the State of Qatar on the great success of the largest international convention ever held in this country.
Before concluding, I would like to reiterate my sincere gratitude on behalf of the people and the Government of Japan for the generous support from Qatar after the unprecedented catastrophe that hit Japan last year. A newly launched fishery processing center in the devastated town of Onagawa constructed with the support of Qatar Friendship Fund was welcomed by the local population as a hub for regional rehabilitation. Proudly I report to you that Japan has been making steady progress toward recovery.
I would like to conclude my remark by expressing best wishes for good health and happiness of His Highness the Emir and His Majesty the Emperor and all of you present here and for the continued success of the State of Qatar and Japan.
Thank you for your attention.
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