This event was an opportunity to showcase the positive impact of Japanese investment through job creation, long-term employment and human resource development, which in turn promotes the UK’s economic growth and international competitiveness, and contributes to revitalising local economies.
Approximately 170 guests attended the reception, including 4 Secretaries of State, approximately 50 MPs and Lords, key representatives from UK government and industry, and around 80 Japanese business leaders, creating an invaluable platform for networking and discussions on opportunities for business partnerships.
The event featured keynote speeches from the Ambassador of Japan, H.E. Mr Koji Tsuruoka, the Rt. Hon. Jeremy Hunt MP, Secretary State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs, Mr John Allan, President of the CBI, and Mr Isao Kano, President of the Japanese Chamber of Commerce and Industry in the UK.
The Rt Hon Greg Clark MP, Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, The Rt Hon Chris Grayling MP, Secretary of State for Transport and the Rt Hon Alun Cairns MP, Secretary of State for Wales also attended.
During his opening remarks, Ambassador Tsuruoka highlighted the many positive activities of Japanese companies in the UK, emphasising how highly Japanese companies value their employees and the local communities they are in, and requested continued consideration from the UK Government towards Japanese companies throughout the Brexit process.
Foreign Secretary, Mr Jeremy Hunt said:
“In the last four decades, Japanese ingenuity, expertise and management has helped transform vital sectors of the UK economy, from automotives to pharmaceuticals. Part of this immense contribution is measurable – and Japan has invested over ￡46 billion in the UK. But perhaps the greater part cannot be quantified. All over Britain, people have benefited from the long term, community-focused approach to business that is the hallmark of Japanese investment.”
Foreign Secretary Jeremy Hunt visited Japan last September, where he met Japanese Prime Minister Shinzō Abe and Foreign Minister Taro Kono to discuss key areas of close cooperation, including the UK Japan future economic partnership, security and defence, and foreign policy issues such as the Korean Peninsula.
Mr. Allan and Mr. Kano also provided valuable insights into the challenges facing UK and Japanese industry respectively, and looked ahead to forging new opportunities for the Japanese and UK business communities to work together even closer in the future.
This was the fourth Parliament Event held by the Embassy of Japan, following previous successful events in 2015, 2016 and 2017.
The Embassy of Japan