His Majesty King Felipe VI received in audience at the Palacio de La Zarzuela the CEOE president, Juan Rosell and a delegation, which included members from the Japanese business organization, Nippon Keidanren, the chairman of the Keidanren Committee for Europe, Yoshio Sato and the Japanese ambassador to Spain, Masashi Mizukami. Following the hearing, a business meeting was held at the headquarters of CEOE to discuss the negotiations of the EU-Japan economic agreement, the experiences of Spanish and Japanese companies in both countries and access to third markets.
Juan Rosell stressed that CEOE works very closely with its Japanese counterpart Nippon Keidanren within the OIE and the OECD Business and Industrial Advisory Committee (BIAC), as well as with BUSINESSEUROPE, in all aspects relating to Economic and trade relations between the EU and Japan. Rosell said that the idea for the initiative of the Japanese delegation to Spain emerged in the bilateral meeting held by CEOE and Nippon Keidanren last April in Japan, on the occasion of the trip of their Majesties as part of a major Spanish business delegation.
The president of CEOE explained that in Madrid and Barcelona, the Japanese business mission led by the president of the Committee for Europe of Keidanren, Yoshio Sato, will hold meetings with the main institutions in both cities. “The main objective is to identify new joint opportunities in third countries, to analyse the negotiations of the free trade agreement between the EU and Japan and to exchange business experiences in the respective markets,” he said.
Chairman Keidanren Committee for Europe, Yoshio Sato, said that the Japanese delegation is made up of thirty representatives of the country’s eighteen largest companies. He also noted that Japan and Spain are celebrating the 150th anniversary of the establishment of diplomatic and trade relations in 2018 and that CEOE, in close collaboration with Keidanren, will make every effort to further strengthen the economic ties between the two countries.
Japan’s ambassador to Spain, Masashi Mizukami, emphasized that bilateral relations are being strengthened year after year. In this regard, he mentioned that on the occasion of the 150th anniversary of diplomatic relations between Japan and Spain in 2018 various commemorative activities will be jointly organized by institutions and public-private entities, in which they hope to be able to count on the presence of His Majesty King Felipe VI.
Spain-Japan Business Meeting
Following the actual hearing, the Japanese delegation held a business meeting at the CEOE headquarters to discuss the negotiations of the future EU-Japan economic agreement, as well as the experiences of Spanish and Japanese companies in both countries and cooperation in third markets.
The meeting was opened by the vice president of CEOE and president of the International Relations Commission, Joaquim Gay de Montellà; The executive director of Invest in Spain of the ICEX, José Carlos García de Quevedo; The director general of the Chamber of Commerce of Spain, Inmaculada Riera; The chairman of the Keidanren Committee for Europe, Yoshio Sato; And the Japanese ambassador to Spain, Masashi Mizukami.
Vice President CEOE pointed out that with trade exchanges that exceeded 6,000 million euros last year, Japan has become our second largest customer and Asian supplier, behind only China. He said that along with the importation of high-tech Japanese cars and equipment, there has also been a growing export of Spanish products related to agri-food, automotive, fashion and health. He also emphasized the numerous technological collaborations being carried out by Japanese and Spanish companies and scientific and technological institutions in areas of common interest, such as energy, nanotechnology or new materials; As well as in tourism, health and cooperation in third markets.
EU-Japan Free Trade Agreement
The vice-president of CEOE expressed his satisfaction with the communiqué issued by EU and Japan, announcing the conclusion of the trade negotiations of the EU-Japan free trade agreement. However, there are still technical aspects that should be outlined in the coming months.
The Chairman of the Asian Committee of CEOE, Tomás González and his counterpart in the Subcommittee on Planning and Coordination of the Committee for Europe of Keidanren and vice-president of Hitachi, Akira Shimizu spoke more deeply on this issue. In turn, Mitsubishi Spain president Kiyoshi Azuma discussed possible bilateral business cooperation in both markets and representatives of major Spanish and Japanese companies spoke of their experience in both countries. Finally, the event was closed by the director general of Casa Asia, Ramon Maria Moreno.