1. German-Japanese Economic Forum, 2006


Japan is back: the world's second largest economy recorded growth of 2.8% in 2005 and has returned to being the growth engine of global markets. The highly innovative Japanese industry is of outstanding importance for German companies. As a result of the "Germany Year" running until March 2006, Germany is once again increasingly perceived as an important partner in Japan. As high-tech and high-wage locations with no energy reserves of their own, both industrial nations are dependent on innovation and a know-how lead in core technologies.

High-ranking representatives from industry and politics discussed past experiences and future challenges for German-Japanese cooperation in key industrial sectors at the Hanover Fair on 27 April 2006, with keynote speakers including Hiroshi Tsukamoto, President of the Japanese foreign trade organization JETRO, and Dr. Kisaburo Kodama, Vice President of the Japan National Institute of Advanced Industrial Science and Technology (AIST).

Some 140 participants attended the event at the Hannover Messe Congress Center.

How successful German-Japanese cooperation in industry can be was made clear in field reports from industry representatives of both countries. Speakers included Sir Stephen Gomersall, Chief Executive of Hitachi Europe Ltd. and Makoto Tsukakoshi, Managing Director of NEC High Performance Computing Europe GmbH. Experiences from a German perspective were reported by Rittal K.K., Japan and JENOPTIK Laser, Optik, Systeme GmbH.

The aim of the Economic Forum is to intensify German-Japanese economic relations in the long term through continuous dialogue at the leading industrial trade fair and to tap into as yet untapped potential for cooperation.

The German-Japanese Economic Forum at the Hanover Fair 2006 was organized by the Japanese Foreign Trade Organization JETRO and the State of Lower Saxony in cooperation with ECOS and supported by the Federal Ministry of Economics, Deutsche Messe AG, the German-Japanese Business Circle and the Japanese Ministry of Economy, Trade & Industry (METI).

The subsequent reception by the Prime Minister of Lower Saxony, Mr. Wulff, in the presence of the Ambassador of Japan, Mr. Hiroyuki Takano, provided the opportunity for personal talks with the German and Japanese speakers.