On Wednesday 25 April, The King and Queen’s official visit to Japan continued with a visit to Keidanren and attendance at Business Sweden’s Future of Healthcare seminar.
This year, Sweden and Japan celebrate 150 years of diplomatic relations, and The King and Queen’s visit is at the invitation of the Japanese government. Sweden’s government is represented by ministers Ann Linde and Ibrahim Baylan, who are accompanying The King and Queen on their visit.
On Wednesday morning, The King and Queen had separate programmes.
In the morning, The King visited the headquarters of Keidanren together with representatives from the Confederation of Swedish Enterprise.
Keidanren is Japan’s leading business organisation and the meeting covered such topics as business climate, opportunities for collaboration and areas for development.
Talks were given by Mr Nakanishi, Keidanren’s Deputy Chairman, who spoke on the subject of innovation, and by Mr Ochi from Keidanren’s Europe Committee, who talked about relations between Japan and the EU.
In the morning, The Queen attended Business Sweden’s Future of Healthcare seminar at the Swedish embassy in Tokyo.
The seminar represented an opportunity for Swedish and Japanese companies operating within the field of medicine to discuss healthcare of the future, on the theme of e-health and digitalisation.
In the afternoon, The King and Queen visited the old samurai city of Kamakura, famous for its temple and historical buildings. The city is home to the Living Lab for Active Ageing project, which is a collaboration between Linnaeus University, Johanneberg Science Park and the University of Tokyo. The aim of the project is to improve the living situation for older people, placing a particular focus on the issues of loneliness and segregation.
While in Kamakura, The King and Queen also visited a traditional Japanese Minka house. There they spoke with Yoshihiro Takishita, architect and representative of the Association for the Preservation of Old Japanese Farmhouses.
Later that evening, The King and Queen took part in a meeting followed by a dinner with Prime Minister Shinzo Abe at Akasaka Palace in Tokyo.
During the dinner, The King gave a speech in which he referred to the friendship between Japan and Sweden, and of the historical connections that unite the two countries and the need for cooperation.
“During these last few days, Her Majesty and I have once again had the pleasure of renewing our strong bonds with Japan and with the Imperial Family. As always in your country, we have been received with outstanding warmth and hospitality. (...) We live in a time where challenges are increasingly of a global nature. Cooperation is more important than ever.”
Read entire speech (in English)