November 20


Cooperation between European and Japanese Regions


International region-to-region cooperation is an effective means for bringing dynamism to regional economy by internationalizing activities of local entities, including small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs). Forms of regional cooperation are well diversified, covering wide range of activities such as export-import of commodities, trade in services, investment, business partnerships (B2Bs), collaboration in research, technology development and innovation, and promotion of people mobility. Such cases of region-to-region cooperation in industry, trade, investment and innovation already exist between Europe and Japan, including collaboration between clusters.

The objective of the seminar is to highlight examples of region-to-region cooperation to identify best practice and share experience with European and Japanese regions interested to engage in partnerships and cooperation related to industry, trade, investment and innovation. The seminar intends to identify to main needs and expectation, the main challenges and opportunities as well as the available instruments and programmes to establish win-win partnerships.

The seminar will also touch upon Europe-Japan region-to-region cooperation targeting operations in third countries, such as in South East Asia, Latin America or Africa. This kind of alliance between European and Japanese regions may be built on the experience and strengths of one region to be used for interacting with other regions in the world.

The seminar aims at preparing the ground for the possible setting up of a regional cooperation platform to help interested European and Japanese regions finding suitable partners, using relevant instruments and financial resources, and fully exploiting the opportunities of the EU-Japan Economic Partnership Agreement (EPA).


14:30 – 14:35 Dr. Philippe de Taxis du Poët, Minister Counsellor, EU Delegation to Japan  - Welcoming remarks

14:35 – 15:35 Presentations (10 min) of cooperation between European and Japanese regions
- Mr. Olivier Becht, President of the European Center for Japanese Studies in Alsace – Alsace Japan Agency and Député du Haut-Rhin - Alsace's Experience of International Cooperation and Beyond

- Mr. Georg K. Löer, Representative Director & President, North Rhine-Westphalia Japan K.K. Building relationships between regions in Japan and Germany - challenges, opportunities and rewards

- Mr. Takuya Tasso, Governor of Iwate Prefecture – IWATE and Europe ~ For further cooperation
- Mr. Yoshinori Sakiura, Executive Director, Tourism & International Affairs Bureau, Gifu Prefectural Government  – Strategic Partnership between Gifu Prefecture & EU Region ~ Centered on France
- Mr. Yasumi Kitao, Executive Director, Growth Industry Promotion Office, Department of Commerce, Industry and Labor, Osaka Prefectural Government - Activities of cooperation with European regions of Osaka prefecture
- Dr. Ben Kloeck, Flanders Investment & Trade – Cooperation between Flanders and Japanese Regions in Life Sciences

15:35 – 15:45
- Mr. Tatsuya Ishida, Director of Regional Revitalization Promotion JETRO's Support for Regional Cooperation

15:45 – 15:55
- Mr Riki Aoki, Commerce and Industrial Promotion Division, Hitachi City/JETRO Ibaraki – Industrial Exchange Projects between Hitachi area of Ibaraki prefecture and Baden-Württemberg, Germany

15:55 – 16:05
- Dr. Philippe de Taxis du Poët, General Manager of the EU-Japan Centre for Industrial Cooperation, and Minister Counsellor at the EU Delegation to Japan – Towards a regional cooperation platform

16:05 – 16:20 Coffee break

16:20 – 17:20 Panel Discussion and Q&A - Conditions for a successful regional cooperation ~What are vital elements? What a regional cooperation platform should do? ~
- Dr. Daniel Kremers, German Institute for Japanese Studies - Mountains and Forest: Economic Resources and Quality of Life ~ Multi-level forest utilization - A field of international regional-cooperation?
- Mr. Tatsushi Amano, Deputy Director General, New Energy and Power Finance Department, Japan Bank for International Cooperation (JBIC) - Conditions for a successful regional cooperation ~ JBIC Perspectives

- Ms. Marta Sanna, Managing Director, Smartimport srl
- Dr. Haruyuki Hiratani, General Manager, Takasago Electric INC - Regional Cooperation between FR and JPN ~ From Industry/Business point of view

- Dr. Virginie Fermaud, Director of the European Center for Japanese Studies in Alsace and the Alsace Japan Agency

17:20 – 17:30 Closing remarks

- Ms. Patricia Flor, EU Ambassador to Japan
- Ms. Catherine Trautmann, - Former Member of the European Parliament 1989–1997 and 2004–2014

17:30 – 18:30 Networking Reception (same venue)

Delegation of European Union to Japan

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