The first ever visit to Vietnam by a Japanese Emperor and Empress is a historic event of great significance to the two countries’ traditional relationship, press secretary of the Emperor Hatsuhisa Takashima told the Vietnam News Agency.
In an interview granted to the Vietnam News Agency ahead of the scheduled Vietnam visit by Emperor Akihito and Empress Michiko, the press secretary highlighted the long-standing relations between Vietnam and Japan, which dated back to the 16th century with the presence of the first Japanese street in Vietnam.
The bilateral rapport is now at its best after undergoing historical ups and downs, he said, adding that the exchange of visits between the two countries’ leaders is important to reinforce their mutual trust and friendship.
Takashima noted that Vietnam and Japan are carrying out a number of activities to tighten their amity.
He stressed that as the biggest aid provider for Vietnam, Japan has been cooperating with the Southeast Asian country to support its development, citing as examples the donation of maritime patrol vessels for Vietnam, the construction of the Vietnam – Japan University, and the active operation of Japanese businesses in Vietnam.
The effective bilateral cooperation in economics, human resources training and infrastructure improvement have contributed to the good relationship between the two countries, according to Takashima.
He said the Japanese Emperor and Empress were touched by the warm invitations from Vietnamese leaders, adding that the visit is one of the most-awaited for visits for both people and political circles in both countries.
The visit of Japanese Emperor Akihito and Empress Michiko to Vietnam beginning February 28 will be an important landmark in Vietnam-Japan relations, according to Vietnam’s Ambassador to Japan Nguyen Quoc Cuong.
Ambassador Cuong said both the Emperor and Empress are looking forward to the trip.
Cuong said that the first trip of the Emperor to Vietnam since the two countries established diplomatic relations 44 years ago is historic and an important landmark in the relationship.
According to the Ambassador, the Vietnam-Japan relationship has become closer with trust.
He cited history and culture as reasons behind the visit of the Emperor and Empress’s to Hue in the central province of Thua Thien-Hue.
The Emperor and Empress expressed their admiration of the “Nha nhac of Hue court or ceremonial music of Hue court,” which was recognised in 2003 by UNESCO as a Masterpiece of the Oral and Intangible Heritage of Humanity, and is being performed in Japan’s Royal Palace.
Japan has given a lot of assistance to the renovation of historic sites, in the Hue citadel.
Ambassador Cuong said that the trip is a manifestation of the development of the Vietnam-Japan relationship and will bring the relationship to new heights.