Japan-United Kingdom Relations

May 22, 2019

Basic Data

Diplomatic Relations:

  • Established in October 1854 with the signing of the Treaty of Friendship and Trade.

Japanese Nationals:

  • Number of Japanese nationals residing in UK: 64,969 (June, 2016)
  • Number of British nationals residing in Japan: 15,652 (June, 2016)

Trade with Japan (2018):

  • Exports to the UK: 1.53 trillion yen (cars, power engines, car parts)
  • Imports from the UK: 0.91 trillion yen (medical and pharmaceutical products, cars, power engines)

Direct Investment from Japan:

  • 17.02 trillion yen (stock, as of 2016).

VIP Visits

From Japan to United Kingdom:
Year Name
2011 Foreign Minister Takaaki Matumoto (May)
2012 Their Majesty The Emperor and Empress (May)
Foreign Minister Koichiro Gemba (Oct)
2013 Foreign Minister Fumio Kishida (April)
Prime Minister Shinzo Abe (June)
2014 Prime Minister Shinzo Abe (April-May)
2015 Foreign Minister Fumio Kishida (January)
Defence Minister Gen Nakatani (January)
2016 Prime Minister Shinzo Abe (May)
2017 Prime Minister Shinzo Abe (April)
2018 Finance Minister Taro Aso (September)
2019 Prime Minister Shinao Abe (January)
From United Kingdom to Japan:
Year Name
2010 Foreign Secretary William Hague (July)
2012 Prime Minister David Cameron (April)
2013 Foreign Secretary William Hague (October)
2014 Lord Speaker Baroness D'Souza (September)
2015 H.R.H. The Duke of Cambridge (February-March)
Speaker John Bercow (August)
2016 Foreign Secretary Phillip Hammond, Defence Minister Michael Fallon (January)
Foreign Secretary Phillip Hammond (April),
Prime Minister David Cameron (May),
Speaker John Bercow (September),
2017 Foreign Secretary Boris Johnson (July)
Prime Minister Theresa May (August-September)
2018 Foreign Secretary Jeremy Hunt (September)
2019 Foreign Secretary Jeremy Hunt (April)

Other Exchanges

JET Programme

The Japan Exchange and Teaching Programme seeks to help enhance internationalization in Japan, by promoting mutual understanding between Japan and other nations. This programme has so far given more than 10,000 young people in the UK the opportunity to learn more about Japan, through their experience as Assistant Language Teacher, Coordinator for International Relations, or Sports Exchange Advisor. JET participants play important roles for a better mutual understanding between people the two countries.

UK-Japan 21st Century Group

The UK-Japan 21st Century Group is an advisory group, established in 1985 as UK-Japan 2000 Group, to study Japan-UK cooperation, based on an agreement between then Prime Minister Nakasone and Prime Minister Thatcher. It is a custom that recommendations adopted through discussions at the meeting are submitted to the Prime Ministers of the two countries. The group was convened most recently in the UK in September 2017.

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