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Slovak President Pays Visit to Japanese cities of Osaka and Kyoto
June 29, 2012
During his official visit to Japan, Slovak President Ivan Gašparovič also visited the cities of Osaka and Kyoto.
In front of more than three hundred students at the Osaka University, the Slovak head of state delivered a lecture entitled “Slovakia in Europe - A Responsible Society”. The Slovak President noted that even at the time of the economic crisis Slovakia would remain part of a “hard integration core” of the European Union, while its economy would be the fastest growing one in the EU.
According to Ivan Gašparovič, the bilateral Slovak-Japanese relations are characterised by good history, as well as close political and economic cooperation. The Slovak head of state also recalled before the Osaka University students the symbolism of a historic visit of Milan Rastislav Štefánik at the Japanese Imperial Court in 1918, at the time of establishment of a democratic Czechoslovakia.
The President responded to students’ questions concerning the period of establishment of an independent and sovereign Slovak Republic and the split of the former Czech and Slovak federation.
In Osaka, the Slovak President also met with Mr Ichiro Matsui, the governor of the Osaka prefecture, with whom he primarily discussed the future of economic cooperation between Slovakia and Japan, and a possible increase in the volume of Japanese investments in Slovakia. Also in Osaka, President Ivan Gašparovič paid a visit to the national mint of Japan and the head office of the Panasonic Corporation; its Chairman of the Board, Mr Fumio Ohtsubo, introduced the Slovak guest to the most recent production plans of the company. Panasonic Corporation, employing more than 300,000 people worldwide, also runs three operations in Slovakia. These three operations, producing dashboards for the automotive industry, batteries for hybrid engines, and DVD and Blue Ray players, employ more than 2,150 people altogether. The Panasonic Chairman of the Board noted that since 2007 they had been engaged in close cooperation with the University of Žilina, Slovakia, in the area of research and development.
In the city of Kyoto, the Slovak President later met with the governor of the Kyoto prefecture, Mr Keiji Yamada, and the Mayor of Kyoto, Mr Daisaku Kadowaka. With the top representatives of this historical former imperial capital of Japan the Slovak President in particular discussed the preservation of the world's cultural heritage and natural beauties of Kyoto of the past millennium.
During his official visit, the head of the Slovak Republic was also awarded a degree honoris causa by the International University of Tokyo for the development and promotion of Japanese-Slovak relations.