News

  • 10 Aug 2016 9:10 AM | Anonymous
    Need a Business Plan?

     

    Are you a business owner looking for a business plan tailored to the Japanese market? If so, take part in the Japan Market Expansion Competition (JMEC)!

     

    As a JMEC Project Client, you can receive a professional business plan developed by some of Japan's brightest up-and-coming business leaders for a fraction of the cost of hiring outside consultants. To learn more about this opportunity, visit the JMEC homepage  http://www.jmec.gr.jp/ where you also find the application form.

     

    JMEC is also calling for individuals to join the program as JMEC Participants and be part of the business plan creation process. This MBA-style program includes classroom training as well as hands-on business plan writing experience. Go to http://www.jmec.gr.jp/participants to learn more and apply.

     

    Established in 1993 and supported by 18 foreign chambers of commerce in Japan, JMEC is a non-profit business training program for mid career business professionals, who research and write professional business plans in teams to help companies enter or expand their business in Japan.

     

    The ANZCCJ is a proud sponsor of JMEC and encourages our members and the greater business community to get involved.


    Learn more about the program here.

  • 09 Aug 2016 4:41 PM | Anonymous

    Event wrap up: SME Support Program IV

     



    9 August 2016 | By Grace Yeung

     

    Over 70 Japanese business representatives and entrepreneurs gathered on 9th August at the Japan External Trade Organisation (JETRO) headquarters in Tokyo, to attend the fourth event of the highly acclaimed SME Support Program event series.

     

    The SME Support Program is presented on a quarterly basis by the Australian and New Zealand Chamber of Commerce in Japan (ANZCCJ), and hosted in partnership with the Tokyo Chamber of Commerce and Industry (TCCI) and JETRO. The program provides small and medium-sized businesses in Japan with advice, training and networking opportunities for effective business expansion and promotion in Australia and New Zealand.

     

    Speakers who presented their success stories at the event were:

    • Mr Hideto Horiguchi, Triad Geomodels & Design Pty Ltd
    • Mr Yuta Iguchi, Ikemu Japan
    • Mr Ryosuke Morioka, AIU Insurance Company, Ltd.

     

    “The speakers provided useful information for business success and development. This is also an excellent opportunity to network,” said one attendee who heads a Tokyo-based international real estate agency, for whom today was her first SME event.

     

    Thank you to our guest speakers, business owners and entrepreneurs who attended this event and to our ANZCCJ Advisors who donated their time to this event.


    ANZCCJ is committed to providing useful advice, information and networking opportunities to SMEs in Japan who are interested in trade with Australia and New Zealand. For more information on how your business can take part at our next SME Support Program Event as a presenter, advisor or participant, please contact Cristina Merino, ANZCCJ Executive Director at Cristina.Merino@anzccj.jp


  • 09 Aug 2016 12:00 PM | Anonymous

    ANZCCJ ANNOUNCES NEW LEADERSHIP TEAM

     

    FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

     

    9 August 2016

     

    The Executive Council of the Australian and New Zealand Chamber of Commerce in Japan (ANZCCJ), which was elected at the Annual General Meeting on July 21 2016, today announced that Andrew Gauci, Managing Director & CEO of Lendlease Japan, will succeed Melanie Brock, Managing Director of Melanie Brock Advisory, as Chair of the ANZCCJ.

     

    Melanie expressed her intention to step down after six years leading the ANZCCJ.   The Executive Council noted that under Melanie’s leadership, numerous important milestones had been met and that Melanie would be leaving the role of Chair with the ANZCCJ in an exceptionally strong position to deliver ever increasing value to its members going forward. 

     

    Andrew will take over as Chair from 1 November 2016, with Melanie’s term of office ending on 31 October 2016. The Executive Council unanimously voted to bestow the title of Chair Emeritus in recognition for her achievements over the past six years.

     

    The Executive Council re-elected Edward Cole, Managing Partner at Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer, as Vice Chair, and appointed Catherine O’Connell, Head of Legal at Molex Japan, as the other Vice-Chair. Martin Spann, Branch Head and Head of Markets Tokyo at Commonwealth Bank of Australia, was elected Treasurer.

     

    Andrew Gauci has been in his present position as CEO of the Lendlease business in Japan since 2007 and has extensive experience as a member of the Executive Council, having served for the past six years. “On behalf of the Executive Council and the membership, I would like to thank Melanie for six years of service and dedication to the Chamber and for extending her term of office as Chair to the end of October 2016. This will ensure a smooth transition,” said Mr Gauci.

    Melanie added, “With Andrew Gauci we have an excellent successor for the position of Chair. He represents the continuation of our Executive Council agenda to ensure the ANZCCJ’s growth as the source of information, representation and business connections for the Australian and New Zealand  business community in Japan. I look forward to working with Andrew on his transition into the role.”

     

    When first elected, Melanie was the ANZCCJ’s 16th Chair, and the first woman in the position. She took office in the year Japan hosted APEC and oversaw the ANZCCJ’s strong advocacy during the JAEPA negotiations. The ANZCCJ has launched many important initiatives under Melanie’s leadership, including the Japanese SME Support Program and the Tohoku Reconstruction Program which continues to play a vital role in raising awareness of the region’s recovery efforts among members of the foreign community in Japan.

     

    The Chamber experienced a marked increase in engagement by the Japanese business community and Japanese membership through Melanie’s relationship and strong links with the Japan Chamber of Commerce and Industry and the Japan-Australia Business Co-operation Committee.  

     

    Melanie continued, “It has been an honour to serve as Chair of the ANZCCJ over the past six years. I want to thank our past and present Executive Council members, our Japanese partners, and especially our members and sponsors – who are the foundation of our Chamber – for their continued support, and ask that they extend this to Andrew and his new leadership team.”

     


    Media contact: Cristina Merino, ANZCCJ Executive Director                     

    T 03 6234 9350 | E cristina.merino@anzccj.jp

     

    About the ANZCCJ

     

    The Australian and New Zealand Chamber of Commerce in Japan (ANZCCJ) is a non-profit organisation with over 600 members. ANZCCJ’s mission is to play a constructive and meaningful role in developing Australia/New Zealand-Japan business by providing members with an effective source of information, representation and commercial connections.

     

    To learn more visit www.anzccj.jp

     

     

     

  • 09 Aug 2016 11:56 AM | Anonymous
    即時発表用

     

    201689

     

    2016721日に在日オーストラリア・ニュージーランド商工会議所の年次総会により選出された新しい役員会において、今般、アンドリュー・ガウチ氏 (レンドリース・ジャパン 代表取締役兼CEO)が、メラニー・ブロック会頭の後任として選ばれました。

     

    ブロック氏(株式会社Melanie Brock Advisory代表取締役兼CEO)は6年間に渡りANZCCJを先導してきましたが、今年をもって引退する意思を固めました。役員会は「メラニーのリーダーシップのお陰で商工会議所は多くの偉業を成し遂げることができました。そして現在の商工会議所は、いまだかつてない程大きな価値を会員の皆様に提供できる組織に成長しました」とブロック氏の貢献を称えました。

     

    ブロック氏は20161031日に会頭の任期を終え、ガウチ氏が111日より会頭を務めることになります。また、役員会はブロック氏の6年間の功績を称え、全員一致の投票でブロック氏に 名誉会頭 のタイトルを贈りました。

     

    副会頭には、再選されたエドワード・コール氏(フレッシュフィールズ東京オフィス マネージング・パートナー)とキャサリン・オコーネル氏(日本モレックス合同会社 法務部長)が就任し、財務責任者にはマーティン・スパン氏(オーストラリア・コモンウェルス銀行支社長兼日本市場部長 )が選ばれました。

     

    ガウチ氏は、2007年よりレンドリース・ジャパンのCEO職についており、商工会議所においては6年間役員を務めた経験を持っています。今回の会頭交代について「役員会を代表して、メラニーのいままでの活動や貢献と共に、201610月まで任期の延長を引き受けてくれた事に関して感謝します。これによって円滑な引継ぎが出来ます」と述べました。

     

    また、ブロック氏は「アンドリューは会頭に適任であり、新会頭の下で役員会はいままで議論してきたテーマを継続して実行していくことが可能です。それにより、商工会議所は会員の情報源、また在日オーストラリアとニュージーランド・ビジネスコミュニティーの代表、またはコネクションとしての役割を今後とも伸ばす事ができます」と述べました。

     

    ブロック氏は16代目の会頭として就任し、初の女性会頭として活躍しました。当選した最初の年には、日本でAPEC(アジア太平洋経済協力)首脳会議が開かれ、また日豪経済連携協定交渉の推進活動の中心となって活躍しました。またブロック氏の下で、中小企業サポートプログラムや東北復興支援プログラムなど重要な施策が行われ、現在でも東北地方の復興状況を商工会議所会員や外国人コミュニティーに発信する活動に務めています。

     

    ブロック氏の日本商工会議所と日豪経済委員会との強固な結びつきによって、当商工会議所は日本のビジネスコミュニティー や日本人会員との活動を深めることができました。 ブロック氏は「過去6年間、会頭を務められたことをとても光栄に思います。かつて活躍してくださった役員、そして現役員の皆様、日本の関係者、特に当商工会議所の基盤となっている会員とスポンサーの皆様にお礼を申し上げると同時に、後任のアンドリューと新しいチームへ何卒私同様のご支援を賜りますようお願い申し上げます」と述べました。

     

    お問合せ: クリスティーナ・メリノ|ANZCCJ事務局長                         

    T 03 6234 9350 | E: cristina.merino@anzccj.jp

     

    About ANZCCJ


    在日オーストラリア・ニュージーランド商工会議所は600を超える会員から成る非営利組織です。ANZCCJは、会員への有益な情報やネットワーキングの機会を提供し、日本そしてオーストラリア、ニュージーランド間のビジネスの発展に貢献する事を使命としています。詳細につきましては弊所ウェブサイト(www.anzccj.jp)をご覧ください。

     

  • 05 Aug 2016 2:29 PM | Anonymous

    Next New Zealand Ambassador to Japan named


    Foreign Minister Murray McCully has named diplomat Stephen Payton as New Zealand’s next Ambassador to Japan.


    “New Zealand has long-standing and strong ties with Japan, underpinned by a close network of personal and business relationships,” Mr McCully says.


    A major focus for the Ambassador will be on helping to promote New Zealand interests in the areas of food and agriculture, security, and energy.


    “Japan will host the Rugby World Cup in 2019 and the Olympics in 2020. Both these events will provide an opportunity to strengthen links between our two counties at all levels,” Mr McCully says.


    Mr Payton has served as Director of the New Zealand Commerce and Industry Office in Taipei.  He speaks Japanese and was previously New Zealand’s Consul General in Osaka.


    Source: Official website of the New Zealand Government

  • 27 Jul 2016 10:09 AM | Anonymous
    Members,


    While the AGM might not be the most exciting event on the calendar of any organisation, it is one of the most important, so thank you all for being here tonight. I would also like to extend thanks to the broader membership and friends of the Chamber for the ongoing support that has been afforded to me and the Executive Council. 

    Each year, at the time of the AGM, when I look back at the year previous, I am reminded of how much we have done, and also how much fun we have had! 

    In 2015, the Chamber's priorities included:

    • Facilitating business and information exchange between Japan, Australia and New Zealand through a range of events including the SME Support Event Series, networking events, panel discussions and information seminars;
    • Making a meaningful contribution to the annual conferences held by the Australia Japan Business Cooperation Committee (AJBCC) and the Japan New Zealand Business Council (JNZBC);  and
    • Reviewing our committees and programs to offer members more and better opportunities to share their expertise with other business people.

    Some personal highlights included the Tohoku weekend – thank you Tim Barnstable for leading that and for your tireless other work as Chair of the Food and Agriculture Committee, the Waratahs Street Rugby event and reception – thank you Israel Folau, and Julie Bishop’s speech on Australia’s foreign policy – thank you Minister for being such a good sport when I gave you the Dockers scarf – not only did that see #scarfgate trend on Twitter, it made me a local hero in Fremantle.


    Other event highlights in the past year include:

    September 2015: Gourmet Food and Wine Garden Party

    This was the largest Gourmet Food and Wine Garden party to date. We secured participation from 21 Australian and New Zealand food and beverage businesses as exhibitors (more than double the scale of previous years).  With over 350 guests in attendance we had a very good turn out from VIPs and others we had targeted from the Japanese food and beverage industry. This, I think, increased the value of participation from the exhibitors’ and attendees’ point of view.

    December 2015: Reception for Australian Prime Minister, co-hosted with Tokyo Chamber of Commerce and Industry
    We worked closely with the TCCI, the Australian Embassy and the Prime Minister’s team to deliver a professional event that was highly regarded by ANZCCJ members.

    January 2016: ANZCCJ Shinnenkai and launch of the Sports for Business Committee
    The Chamber kicked off 2016 by welcoming around 200 of our Members and friends at our Shinnenkai  here at the Australian Embassy.  The event boasted a stellar rugby panel and attracted key business figures and 16 members of the Japanese Parliament including special guest Defense Minister, Mr Nakatani.

    February 2016: Breakfast with Australian Foreign Minister

    Australia’s Foreign Minister The Hon Julie Bishop MP delivered a fantastic speech at a breakfast event attended by 100 senior executives from the ANZCCJ and JABCC/JCCI.

    This year also marked the fifth anniversary of the Great East Japan earthquake and tsunami.  At the Chamber we have been honoured to support two organisations that continue to play vital roles in facilitating rebuilding activities in Tohoku: Support our Kids (SOK) and O.G.A. for Aid. I am pleased to announce that we conducted two very successful Tohoku Volunteer Weekends in this past year and made a charity donation of around 350,000 yen to SOK.

    We further strengthened our working relationship with the Japan and Tokyo Chambers of Commerce and Industry (TCCI/JCCI), and the Young Entrepreneurs Group of the JCCI through collaboration on joint events such as the Prime Minister’s welcome reception in December, the Gourmet Food and Wine Garden Party in September, the International Business Exchange Meeting in October, and the ongoing SME Support Program event series.

    We have also established a solid working relationship with sporting associations such as the Australian Rugby Foundation, Street Rugby Alliance and individual sporting teams which has served to support the objectives of the Sports for Business Committee and attracted new membership. Special thanks to Co-Chairs of that committee - Andrew Gauci and Sally Townsend - for all your efforts getting this new committee established.

     

    Our sponsors have helped to raise the profile of Australian and New Zealand corporate capabilities by giving us access to speakers and executives visiting Japan. Thank you in particular to ANZ, Ashurst, Treasury Wine Estates, Macquarie and the Australian and New Zealand Embassies. 

    Special thanks to the Executive Council members who have recently left Japan.  Peter Davis, Craig Saphin and Jason Reeves made an incredible contribution to the Chamber and are dearly missed. I would also like to acknowledge the great contribution made to the Chamber by our Ex Officio members Clare Walsh, Peter Kell and Julianne Merrimen.

     

    A big thank you must go out to Ambassador Bruce Miller and former Ambassador Mark Sinclair, our Vice Chair, Ed Cole and our Treasurer, Andrew Peyton. Both Ed and Andrew are committed supporters of the Chamber and personal thanks from me for your friendship. To all current members of the Executive Council, thank you for being such great members of the team.

    I would also like to acknowledge a long-term friend of the Chamber, Marcus Yip, who passed away in March this year.

    Our Executive Director, Cristina Merino is an absolute trooper and I am sure I speak for everyone in saying a giant domo arigato for everything you do.  We have welcomed Hikaru Hashimoto as our Operations Manager and Hikaru is a great support to Cristina and myself.  Many of you will have come in contact with our amazing interns and I would like to note the fantastic contribution made by them to the Secretariat. Otsukaresama to all those who help us at the Secretariat.

    There is a lot of love in the room, as the expression goes and I know the Chamber will continue to thrive.  Our membership has continued to work together with the Secretariat to develop a powerful and renewed presence in the business community in Japan.

    Finally, I wish to reassure you that the Executive Council is committed to creating new value for our Membership, our stakeholders and the business community in general.  We truly appreciate the support and continued engagement of our members and welcome any feedback you may have. 

     

     

    Melanie Brock

    Chair of ANZCCJ

     

     

  • 22 Jul 2016 12:43 PM | Anonymous

    2016-2018 EXECUTIVE COUNCIL


    We are delighted to announce the results of the ANZCCJ Executive Council Member elections that were held at our Annual General Meeting on 21 July 2016 at the Australian Embassy Tokyo.


    The following ANZCCJ members have been elected to serve two year terms on the Executive Council:

    Grant Knuckey, Australia and New Zealand Banking Group

    Martin Spann, Commonwealth Bank of Australia

    Edward Cole, Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer

    Tim Barnstable, Murray Goulburn

    Nobi Yamaji, Rio Tinto

    Sally Townsend, Jeroboam


    Six Councillors are continuing on from the 2015 election:

    Melanie Brock

    Andrew Gauci

    Kohei Tsushima

    Damien Roberts

    Gerard Adams

    Catherine O’Connell


    After the election results were announced, ANZCCJ Chair Melanie Brock said: “We were impressed by the high calibre of candidates we had this year. Thank you all for nominating and congratulations to the new Executive Council members. We look forward to working with you all in the year ahead on a range of initiatives.”


    The new ANZCCJ Office Bearers (Chair, Vice Chairs and Treasurer) will be elected at the first Executive Council Meeting scheduled for 28 July 2016.  An announcement to all members will follow that meeting. 
  • 15 Jul 2016 8:00 AM | Anonymous

    The elections and Annual General Meeting (AGM) of the Australian and New Zealand Chamber of Commerce in Japan (ANZCCJ) will be held at the Australian Embassy Tokyo on 21 July 2016.


    Candidates for the 2016-2018 Executive Council


    We are pleased to announce the list of candidates for the 2016-2018 Executive Council term. 


    Casting your vote

    Voting and elections will be held at the AGM on 21 July at the Australian Embassy Tokyo.


    If you are unable to attend the AGM, you may vote through an Absentee Ballot or by appointing a Proxy.


    Only absentee ballots received between 15 July and 5:00pm on 20 July will be valid. Ballot papers will be available from 15 July 2016.


    A voting member may also authorise in writing any person to act as his/her Proxy at the Annual General Meeting.  The proxy shall be entitled to exercise all the powers for the voting member represented.  There is no limit to the number of voting members that a proxy may act for.  Proxy forms must be completed and sent to the Secretariat by 5:00pm on 20 July 2016.


    Click here for full details on the candidature and voting processClick here to read the ANZCCJ Constitution.


    2016 ANNUAL GENERAL MEETING Agenda

    1. Chair's Report

    2. Treasurer's Report

    3. Other Business

    4. Overview of proposed changes to the Constitution

    5. Questions from the Membership

    6. Election of 2016-2018 Executive Council and vote on proposed Constitutional Changes


    For any questions regarding the electoral process, please contact the Secretariat at info@anzccj.jp or 03-6234-9351


  • 11 Jul 2016 3:00 PM | Anonymous


    11 July 2016 | Casey Macfarlane


    The ANZCCJ Secretariat took part in an inspection and information cruise tour around the Port of Tokyo on Thursday 7 July, in order to learn about the recent port development in the face of rapid globalisation and economic growth as well as in the lead up the 2020 Tokyo Olympics and Paralympics. 


    The Port of Tokyo will be celebrating its 75th anniversary this year in style, with a number of upgrades and additions scheduled to be completed in preparation for the 2020 Olympic Games.


    Built in 1941, the Port is located near the center of the Japanese archipelago which acts as an ideal gateway to Tokyo, the industrial, financial and developing tourism core of Japan. The port has five key functions, as outlined by the crew during the information cruise: logistics, tourism, environment, sports and disaster prevention. The cruise around this world class comprehensive urban port and harbor had two main topics both with a focus on the 2020 Olympics; the development of the Waterfront City and the creation of the Umi-no-Mori Sea Forest.


    Waterfront City

    The purpose of the Tokyo Waterfront city is to stimulate growth and tourism in the area and to revolutionise Tokyo water transportation. The Port of Tokyo authority wants to see Tokyo become the ‘city of water’ and will achieve this by investing in a world-class MICE (meetings, incentives, conferences and exhibitions) and International Tourism hub as well as through the creation of a new four-sector town. This project began in 2014 and has so far included the construction of Tokyo Big Sight, ‘Divercity’ Tokyo Plaza, and the DECKS Tokyo Beach. There is hope that this innovation will make a significant contribution to economic value of Tokyo by enabling greater interaction with the rest of the world, thereby evolving the city to become more dynamic in the face of globalisation. To adapt to this new way of conducting business, the Waterfront City will also be a pioneer multilingual area.


    The city is made up of four main areas; Aomi, Ariake-Minami, Ariake-Kita and Daiba, all of which will be developed with the attitude of “coexistence with nature”. This means creating a comfortable residential area and a pleasant environment through combining the hectic city life with a relaxed urban life. This promotes urban development while also maintaining a harmonious relationship with nature.


    AOMI will be the business and commerce district, with special areas for tourism, exchange and information-technology. This region will have a huge focus on research and development as well as industrial creation, all in an effort to increase Tokyo’s R&D competitive edge.

    ARIAKE-MINAMI is the international convention and exhibition hot-spot as well as being used as the staging area for disaster prevention. There will also be a number of sea-side residential areas available.

    ARIAKE-KITA is the main residential sector providing urban housing lifestyles with both ocean vistas and lush green park views.

    DAIBA is the final sector of the Waterfront city and will act as a seaside commercial zone, as well as seafront housing and urban living zones.


    It is estimated that these new sectors will provide over 90,000 jobs and 47,000 homes for people. The total cost of the Waterfront city project is estimated to be ¥2,180 billion and hopefully, this massive investment will bring great economic returns and societal benefits.


    Umi-no-Mori (Sea Forest)

    The Umi-no-Mori is a fantastic program that began the planning stages in 2005. This project focuses on the reclamation of an old landfill site, 88 hectares in size, which has been completely filled in with waste and soil, to be turned into a large green forest. The soil for the forest is a compost of green waste from city parks and streets, as well as waste soil from water purification plants and heat-treated sewage sludge. This project is a cooperative and collaborative activity for citizens, businesses, NPO’s and governments to participate in. The trees and seedlings are purchased as acorns from elementary students, using funds raised by the Sea Forest fundraising campaign. The forest will be fostered and cared for under the slogan ‘Not just for us, but for our children’ and while it is not yet open to the public, it is scheduled for completion at the end of this year. The Sea Forest will be the site for the Equestrian events at the 2020 Olympic Games!


    Looking to the Future

    All future developments at the port have long term perspectives, in that they should ensure the continual growth and development of all port activities and allow for all future developments/upgrades of facilities, airspace uses and environmental measures. The Port of Tokyo is an ever evolving organism that supports the lives and lifestyles of 40 million people living in the capital and surrounding areas, and it is therefore critical that support be provided to ensure its ongoing success and expansion, well into the future.


  • 06 Jul 2016 3:25 PM | Anonymous


    Tohoku Volunteer Weekend and Friendship Festival 2016 Trip Report by FAHC Chair, Tim Barnstable


    The 8th Tohoku Volunteer weekend was blessed with great weather. 

     

    After meeting at Kurikoma Kogen station the first stop was the Sun Sun shopping village.


    Sun Sun is a temporary shopping mall set up in February 2012 by 32 local shop owners while they await the reconstruction of the town.  While at the shipping mall, participants also had to opportunity to visit the Tourism Portal Centre where they could see a photo exhibition of the tsunami.

     

    Next stop was the Disaster Prevention Centre which is now nothing more than a bare steel frame, and still stands as a monument to the devastation brought on by the tsunami. The town had decided to demolish the structure but the prefecture has offered to obtain and maintain the site until 2031, 20 years after the quake, to give local residents time to consider its fate.

     

    The group then split into two with 20 people enjoying a seafood BBQ  with kataribe (story telling) by a survivor of the tsunami. There was a little drama at this point as the bus got stuck in the car park and needed a little help to get it back out into the road. 

     

    The second group arrived at Kamiwarizaki Camp Site shortly after and met with members of Club Australia, the Street Rugby Association, OGA for Aid and the US Navy from Misawa Air Base.  In addition to the street rugby there was face painting and other activities for the kids.

     

     Following is feedback from one of the participants. “My son and I had a lot of fun, the time went by so quickly. Kids normally have to play in a contained space, so it was great to see my son run around freely for three hours. His eyes were sparkling when he told me he was very happy he got to play a lot with other kids. We the moms were able to chat a lot in the meantime so we had a lovely time as well.”

     

    After lunch the first group moved to Koala house for afternoon tea with locals.  Later the second group joined and two Wattles, that were donated by Club Australia, were planted in front of Koala house by Grant Knuckey, CEO of ANZ Bank Japan, Melanie Brock, ANZCCJ Chair and Mr. Abe, current head of Koala House, director of Lifelong-learning centre.

     

    The final activity for the day was to take a boat cruise around the bay which included a running commentary by the Captain.  The back of the boat was open and when we were underway Seagulls were attracted with snacks providing great entertainment for the kids and generally everyone onboard. 

     

    The members were then dropped off at their respective minshuku or the Kanyo Hotel for a fantastic local dinner. 

     

    We were greeted on Sunday morning with another perfect day and we met at the Fukko Market where Ivan and team from the Embassy had the BBQ's fired up and preparations well underway. 

     

    Fukko in Kanji means “to be happy” and “to revive”. The market was first set up just 50 days after the disaster in a school yard. The Fukko Market continues to attracting many people and there are direct economic effects brought by visitors buying Minamisanriku’s products. But the market is also a place to form connections between people, generate enthusiasm again in people who suffered from the disaster, and get the people who have given up the power to reconstruct their stores or companies and challenge for revival.

     

    The market kicked off at 9am with rousing speeches by the Organisers and ANZCCJ Chair Melaine Brock. In our bright yellow "Australia with Minamisanriku" t-shirts our presence was hard to miss. 

     

    In addition to the Australian beef burger bentos, complete with beetroot, Australian and NZ wine was available thanks to Sally Townsend from Jeroboam and Australian beer and coffee were available thanks to Club Australia. During the afternoon 100 bento’s were prepared and donated to the other stall holders.

     

    In the end our group raised 178,900 yen which will be used by the town to facilitate the Summer Festival, specifically the dance contest which has been cancelled since the earthquake.  The festival will take place on the 30th of July from noon until 9pm near the local fish market.

     

    A special thanks to MLA for the beef used and to Kirin for the sports drinks which were given to the kids playing rugby. 

     

     


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