Fiji’s Embassy in Tokyo, Japan has successfully established another Honorary Consulate in Osaka earlier this week.
Fiji’s Ambassador to Japan, H.E Isikeli Mataitoga says the establishment of this Honorary Consulate Office is in line with Fiji’s long-standing policy in establishing and maintaining friendly relations with countries that have demonstrated genuine goodwill towards Fiji.
“The opening of the Honorary Consul Office of Fiji in Kansai reflects the goodwill enjoyed between Japan and Fiji since 1970 in the promotion of economic, commercial and people-to-people relations between our two countries,” Ambassador Mataitoga said.
In establishing the consulate, Fiji’s Embassy in Japan commissioned Mr. Takanori Okada as Fiji’s Honorary Consul for the Kansai Consular District, resident in Osaka City. Mr. Okada’s appointment will cover the Kansai Consular District, which consists of seven large prefectures in western Japan.
In congratulating Mr. Okada on behalf of the Fijian Government, Ambassador Mataitoga expressed his profound gratitude for his willingness to assist Fiji in building and strengthening the Fiji-Japan relationship in the Kansai region.
Fiji now has 5 Honorary Consuls in Japan, resident in five different Prefectures. Ambassador Mataitoga in keeping with his vision intends to set up similar arrangements in other regions of Japan.
With the establishment of the new Honorary Consulate in Osaka, Ambassador Mataitoga is confident that this will lay the platform for Fiji to deepen its outreach in promoting tourism, trade, and investment in the greater Kansai region.
“The Fiji Embassy in Japan is confident that the presence of the Honorary Consulate will encourage and support entrepreneurs in Osaka and Kansai, to visit and invest in Fiji. With the direct flight between Narita and Nadi now in place, more visitors to Fiji from Osaka and the Kansai region are also expected. The office could also be an excellent point of information dissemination about Fiji,” Ambassador Mataitoga said.
Fiji’s prospects in Osaka prefecture is assessed as significant, given their commonalities in the area of manufacturing industry. Osaka Prefecture, as widely known, has a population of more than 8.8 million and is the highest economic growth area in Japan. It is also ranked number one in Japan in terms of the number of manufacturers who operate their businesses there.
Osaka has long boast high-quality SMEs in the manufacturing industry, attracting many world-class companies with quality technologies and highly skilled human resources that support such companies. Additionally, Osaka is home to a number of world class research facilities, and is ranked first in Japan in terms of production volume of pharmaceutical products.
The commissioning ceremony was held at Hotel Mielparque Osaka before 80 guests that included the Special Advisor to the Prime Minister and Member of Parliament, Mayor of Higashi Osaka City, representatives of Osaka Prefecture and Osaka City respectively. Also in attendance were members of the business community, representatives of NGOs as well as academia and Fiji nationals residing in the Kansai region.
The ceremony was marked by the official presentation of the Consular Commission, signed by the Minister of Foreign Affairs, Hon. Inia Seruiratu, by Fiji’s Ambassador to Japan, HE Mr. Isikeli Mataitoga to the newly commissioned Mr. Okada.