Report on the 2005 EU-Japan Year of People-to-People Exchanges
Message for the 2005 EU-Japan Year Outline of the EU-Japan Year Calendar of Events List of Participating Organizations Back to the Report

Message for the 2005 EU-Japan Year

[IMG]Prime Minister:Junichiro Koizumi

Junichiro Koizumi
Prime Minister

December 2005

In the "2005 EU-Japan Year of People-to-People Exchanges," which plays a key role in the area of people and culture exchanges in the "Decade of Japan-Europe Cooperation" launched in 2001, over 1,900 events in a wide range of areas were conducted in Japan and the 25 Member States of the European Union (EU).

The "2005 EU-Japan Year of People-to-People Exchanges" proved to be a great success from the perspective of the number of countries and events, and also from the broad range of participants and the great diversity in terms of the contents of the events. The experience and achievements gained from this year-long exchange will become a valuable asset to Japan-EU relations. I believe that we should utilize the experience we have attained this year as a new starting point from which the Japan-EU exchanges will take further steps forward into the future.

Japan, together with the EU, would like to offer our sincere gratitude to everyone who has contributed to these events in both regions for their enthusiasm and activities for the "2005 EU-Japan Year of People-to-People Exchanges." I am confident that the ties between Japan and the EU nurtured through the year will serve as a basis for further strengthening the Japan-EU partnership.


José Manuel Barroso,
President of the European Commission

December 2005

I would like to pay tribute to all who contributed to the success of the 2005 EU-Japan Year of People to People Exchanges, including the Government of Japan, the Member States of the European Union, and especially the hundreds of different independent organisations in many different fields.

More than 1,900 events have been organised in Japan and in every one of the European Union's twenty-five Member States during the Year. Many of these events have been small, privately organised initiatives that brought ordinary people together in a spirit of mutual understanding.

I am confident that we will be able to build on the success of the EU-Japan Year and continue to see close co-operation between our citizens and an ever-expanding friendship between Japan and the European Union. I hope that this report on the 2005 EU-Japan Year will serve as inspiration.

[IMG]Prime Minister:Jean-Claude Juncker

Jean-Claude Juncker
Prime Minister

December 2005

2005 – Opening up Hearts and Minds

The Grand Duchy of Luxembourg, which held the presidency of the Council of the European Union (EU) during the first half of 2005, had, with the European Commission (EC) in Brussels , the honour of inaugurating the EU-Japan Year of People to People Exchanges.

The wide-ranging program under the High Patronage of Their Royal Highnesses the Grand-Duke and Grand-Duchess in my country, helped to bring Japanese and European citizens closer together through their numerous encounters over the course of the year, providing opportunities to discover the richness of Japanese creativity and the great diversity of its culture.

We are proud of the partnerships between citizens and artists, especially of the musical one established in Luxembourg between the leading Shô player Mayumi Miyata and United Instruments of Lucilin, performing together in world premiere two works from Toshio Hosokawa.

The year 2005 has enabled the realization of new forms of friendly relations. United Instruments of Lucilin plans to record in Japan a CD compilation of Japanese musical works including some of the composer Toshio Hosokawa. Exchanges of this kind will continue through 2006. “Nakata Yoshinao Wo Uta-u Kaï” will return the visit to the child's-choral Marie Astrid and “Misericordias - Schola Gregoriana” intends to initiate close and friendly relationship with Japanese counterparts.

The events of 2005 brought a lot of people together and opened up their hearts and minds to a new and comprehensive approach for closer ties between Japanese and European societies.


Tony Blair
Prime Minister

December 2005

As 2005 draws to a close, it is a great pleasure to look back on the striking success of the EU-Japan Year of People to People Exchanges. Thousands of European and Japanese people from all walks of life have been able to celebrate the warmth of our friendship and learn more about each other, through many hundreds of different events across the EU and Japan. I am sure that in 2005 we have helped to create some solid foundations and a momentum that will see the mutual understanding and regard between our peoples continue to develop in the years to come. That is an achievement we can be proud of; and which we must build on further, as we work together to overcome the many challenges that face us in Europe, Asia and the rest of the world.

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