Message from president

We would like to express our deepest sympathies to many people who died due to the global spread of COVID-19, and we deeply appreciate all the medical personnel who are facing COVID-19 in the medical field. The relationship between the EU and Japan is dramatically growing in importance in the recent unstable global situation, not only as important economic and trade partners, but also as strategic partners sharing common values to tackle global challenges. In February 2019, the EU-Japan Economic Partnership Agreement (EPA), the largest FTA/EPA covering about 40% of global trade, has entered into force. Along with the EU-Japan Strategic Partnership Agreement, the EU-Japan relationship has heightened to a new dimension.

At this opening a new era of the EU-Japan relationship, the EU-Japan Centre for Industrial Cooperation has started its operation as a new independent General Incorporated Foundation in Japan and I have been appointed as first Chairman of the Board of Governors. Thus, a new breath of life has been blown into the Centre, which was originally established in 1987 as a central organization to implement industrial cooperation between EU and Japan as part of the Foundation of Institute for International Studies and Training (renamed later Center for International Economic Collaboration).

The importance of the Centre in the EU-Japan relationship has dramatically grown, based on the EU-Japan EPA as well as The Partnership on Sustainable Connectivity and Quality Infrastructure between EU and Japan signed in September 2019. The Centre will further reinforce its activities in human resource development, business advancements and in business dialogues between the EU and Japan. Furthermore, the Centre will continue to support industrial cooperation between EU and Japan in the fields of digital economy, circular economy, climate change and third market businesses, thereby playing an important role in implementing the EU-Japan strategic partnership to tackle global challenges while adopting new communication methods fitted for the "after-COVID" age.

I have committed to do my utmost efforts in supporting these activities to strengthen the EU-Japan partnership on the occasion of establishment of the Centre's new legal entity. I would appreciate the understanding and cooperation of all the related parties.



Masaki Sakuyama

Chairman of the Board of Governors

EU-Japan Centre for Industrial Cooperation

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