Jamaica and Japan Pledge to Strengthen Relations

Photo: Yhomo Hutchinson Prime Minister, the Most Hon. Portia Simpson Miller, converses with Prime Minister of Japan, His Excellency Mr. Shinzo Abe. Occasion was a dinner reception at Vale Royal on September 30, in honour of Prime Minister Abe, on his first official visit to the island.

Story Highlights

  • The Governments of Jamaica and Japan have signalled their intention to continue to strengthen cooperation and cultural ties.
  • Prime Minister, the Most Hon. Portia Simpson Miller, said the countries share a multifaceted and dynamic relationship, and assured of continued peace, progress and prosperity between the two nations.
  • In extending a warm welcome to Prime Minister Abe and his delegation, Mrs. Simpson Miller urged them to enjoy some of the cultural offerings of the island.

The Governments of Jamaica and Japan have signalled their intention to continue to strengthen cooperation and cultural ties.

Prime Minister, the Most Hon. Portia Simpson Miller, said the countries share a multifaceted and dynamic relationship, and assured of continued peace, progress and prosperity between the two nations.

“I am confident that together, we have a bright future and that our friendship will be enduring,” she said.

Mrs. Simpson Miller was speaking at a reception at Vale Royal yesterday (Sept. 30), in honour of the Prime Minister of Japan, His Excellency Mr. Shinzo Abe, on his first official visit to the island.

In extending a warm welcome to Prime Minister Abe and his delegation, Mrs. Simpson Miller urged them to enjoy some of the cultural offerings of the island.

“The people of Japan love our reggae music, our Blue Mountain coffee and world class athletes like Usain Bolt, Shelly-Ann Fraser-Pryce, Asafa Powell, among many others. In fact, our Japanese brothers and sisters have been known to come to Jamaica and soak in so much of our music and dance that they become champions, kings and queens as dancers, musicians, and selectors of reggae music,” she said.

Reminiscing on her visit to Japan two years ago, Mrs. Simpson Miller said she had the honour to have benefitted from the extraordinary friendliness and graciousness of the Japanese Government and people.

Prime Minister, the Most Hon. Portia Simpson Miller, and Prime Minister of Japan, His Excellency Mr. Shinzo Abe (left), listen to a point being made by Minister of Finance and Planning, Hon. Dr. Peter Phillips, just before the start of a dinner reception at Vale Royal on September 30, in honour of Prime Minister Abe.

“I experienced the wonderful hospitality of the Government and people of Japan. It was truly an unforgettable experience,” she said.

In his address, Prime Minister Abe gave his country’s commitment to offer support to Jamaica in a variety of areas.

“Japan is ready to stand side by side with you so that we can offer cooperation for you in various areas and also that would be helpful for you in addressing those  challenges that you are currently facing, and we would like to do so by utilising our experience that we have as a same island nation,” he said.

He noted that both countries are similar in terms of its beaches, mountains and susceptibility to natural disasters.

He said Jamaica is one of the countries that “Japanese people (hold) very close to their hearts”, adding that the people of Japan continue to be impressed with the prowess of the country’s sportsmen and women, films, reggae music, Blue Mountain coffee, beautiful beaches, and rum.

This marks the third occasion that the leaders are meeting, having held talks in Japan in November 2013, and again in Trinidad and Tobago in July last year at the first Japan-CARICOM summit, where Mrs. Simpson Miller issued the invitation for Prime Minister Abe to visit the island.

The Japanese Prime Minister, who arrived in the island on September  30, participated in several activities before he departed on October 1.

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