The UK in JAPAN 2019-20 season, a high-profile and ambitious campaign to further strengthen the bilateral relationship and deepen the partnership between the UK and Japan as forward-looking global leaders, was launched in September 2019 after its official announcement when Prime Minister Abe visited the UK in January 2019.
The campaign will restart with a “CreativeTech GREAT Season” beginning with the first ever all-virtual London Tech Week - the UK’s biggest tech showcase - on 1-11 September. The main events such as “The Opportunity in London”, “Global Leaders Innovation Summit” and “AI Summit“ can be accessed virtually this year. The spotlight on tech will continue throughout the autumn, with a particular focus on creative technology and digital innovation under the title of a “CreativeTech GREAT Season”.
The UK will continue to promote collaboration with Japan not just in business, science and innovation, but through culture, arts and education, and in particular will showcase the power of creative partnerships to enhance wellbeing and to champion inclusion. An online programme of UK art will include special performances and create a forum for new discussions. And the UK will have a special online programme to share rich UK arts and culture and facilitate dialogues between UK and Japanese arts and creative sector.
The campaign will continue in to 2021, with much of the activity focused on a green and resilient recovery from COVID-19 – a particular priority as the UK prepares to host the UN Climate Change Conference (COP26) in November 2021.
The campaign was paused while all delivery partners focused on the global COVID-19 pandemic and their respective responses. Though the virus response remains a priority, the campaign will resume from September 2020 with much of the activity focusing on how the UK and Japan can recover and rebuild, and how we can support a sustainable global recovery.
Planned to coincide with the hugely successful Rugby World Cup, the UK in Japan season is a series of events and activities to showcase UK excellence in business, innovation, culture, arts and education in order to build closer relationships between the UK and Japan through networking, sharing knowledge and experiences, and collaborations.
On the resumption of the UK in JAPAN campaign, British Ambassador to Japan, His Excellency Paul Madden CMG said: "We remain committed to strengthening our bilateral relationship with Japan as we operate in this “new normal”. We face the same global challenges; climate change, digitalisation, ageing society, the future of mobility as before, and the additional challenge of COVID-19 shows us that international collaboration is essential and no one country can tackle these issues alone.
"The UK and Japan are natural partners and I look forward to using the UK in JAPAN campaign to increase partnerships across business, science, education and the arts that will make both our countries stronger."
The British Council, Japan, Country Director, Matthew Knowles said: "At the British Council, we have always believed that culture connects us. In the face of a truly global challenge, this is more important than ever. We are working to develop new creative partnerships between the UK and Japan that will draw on our respective strengths to support the recovery of the cultural sector."