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Challenged by the COVID-19 pandemic the EU-Japan Centre launched the first virtual edition of its "Get Ready for Japan" Programme in September 2020!

Nine pre-selected European companies have accepted to turn their 2-week GRFJ Programme (that should normally have taken place last May in Japan) to a 3-week virtual and interactive training fully supported and managed by the EU-Japan Centre for Industrial Cooperation. Every day, participants were invited to join the GRFJ platform via their mobile phone or laptop in order to attend a 4-hour livestream session.

The 9 participants from Bulgaria, Germany, Italy, Hungary, Estonia, Lithuania and Slovakia have completed the programme held on 1-18 September 2020.
During the programme, 9 lectures on Japanese culture, economy and marketing in Japan, 2 regional seminars, online visit to Marubeni Corporation, and a 2-day joint seminar were organised. Throughout the regional seminars, the participants learned about the unique support systems for both domestic and foreign companies provided by Tokyo Ota City and Osaka, as well as updates on their new projects. The 2-day joint seminar on cultural foundations of European and Japanese companies and cross-cultural business communication was lectured by Prof. Parissa Haghirian. Additionally, this year, previous EU participants of our training programmes as well as Japanese companies' representatives using Enterprise Europe Network – Japan support were invited to attend the seminar. Around 40 participants in total have participated in the seminar, and this led to fruitful networking sessions between participants.
The programme also offered the opportunity for some participants to do business with Japanese companies throughout tailored individual company meetings (ICM) with the support of the Enterprise Europe Network team. 15 meetings were successfully conducted during the mission.

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