In my capacity of Representative Director of the Japan Association for Latin America and the Caribbean (JAPOLAC), I would like to extend my greetings to the readers of JAPOLAC homepage and wish you and your families good health.
After serving for almost 20 years in Japan as a diplomat, first as Economic Counselor and later as Ambassador of Panama, I realized that despite good diplomatic relations between Japan and the region of Latin America and the Caribbean (LAC), there was little interaction in other areas between both regions when we compare the relations of LAC with that of Europe and the United States.
Also, the presence of Japanese industries in LAC has been limited and mostly focused on the production of raw material and agricultural exports, except Mexico where a Japanese-induced manufacturing developed after the signature of the North American Free Trade (NAFTA), later transformed into the United States-Mexico-Canada Agreement (USMCA).
In view of this limited interaction, a group of Japanese and Latin American people decided to create the Japan Association for Promotion of Latin America and the Caribbean (JAPOLAC) to further expand and deepen the relations between Japan and LAC in different areas.
In this connection, we wish to bring together the best practices and values of Japan and LAC cultures to develop a cooperative model aimed at increasing business opportunities for small and medium enterprises as well as exchanges in human resources, education, health, agriculture, environment and Artificial Intelligence and Information technologies.
We believe that our association with an important country like Japan will generate a new dynamic in the socio-economic development of Latin America and the Caribbean, in the same way that many Asian countries has benefited from the Japanese cooperation.
We are also glad to count on the support of Mr. Kiyoshi Kimura, President of Kiyomura Corporation, and a friend of our region, who has joined JAPOLAC in the capacity of Honorary Director. He has contributed to the promotional activities of the embassies of Panama and Cuba in Japan and wishes to elevate the level of relations between Japan and LAC.
We hope that many LAC as well as Japanese people support our activities to bring further happiness and prosperity to citizens in both sides of the Pacific Ocean.
Dr. Ritter Diaz