Today, two years after the events of 11 March 2011, our thoughts are with those who lost loved ones and those who are still rebuilding their lives in communities affected by the Great East Japan Earthquake.
The Sendai Christchurch Art Exchange was born a year after earthquakes struck the two cities. The project was launched to allow artists from Sendai and Christchurch to reflect on the tragic events of recent times, while lending support to one another and ultimately facilitating a revival of arts in both communities.
The Embassy recently hosted 25 Tokyo based diplomats from 20 embassies for an energy seminar focusing on Japan’s ambitious renewable energy targets. The main speaker was Dr Emi Mizuno, Senior Researcher at the Japan Renewable Energy Foundation (JREF).
The Embassy has been assisting a team of senior researchers from the Disaster Reduction and Human Renovation Institution (DRI) who will visit New Zealand on 17-23 February. In coordination with the Cabinet Office of Japan, DRI is researching systems for improved coordination of international support in the case of a major natural disaster.
Today is Waitangi Day which marks the 173rd anniversary of the signing of the Treaty of Waitangi, which took place in the Bay of Islands in the North Island in 1840. With this event, New Zealand was founded as a modern nation. The Treaty provides a framework for the continuing partnership between the Government and Māori, the indigenous people of New Zealand.
Prime Minister John Key, in his annual “state of the nation” speech delivered to a business audience in Auckland last week, launched a new programme to boost apprenticeships for the Christchurch reconstruction effort.
Deputy Head of Mission Janet Lowe accompanied by First Secretary Stefan Corbett met with senior Ministry of Finance official Masatsugu Asakawa on 18 January. Mr Asakawa has just been appointed Executive Assistant to Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Finance, Mr Taro Aso. The meeting was an opportunity to discuss the direction being taken by the new Government on economic, monetary and fiscal policy.