Results of the 30th Japanese Public Speaking Contest


15 March 2017

On Saturday 11 March 2017, the 30th Japanese Public Speaking Contest was held at the Marriott Hotel in The Hague.
At the opening of the event, Ambassador Inomata, who is a member of the executive committee, made a speech in which he expressed his gratitude towards the sponsors for their generosity in offering fabulous prizes and for their cooperation as judges during the 30th anniversary edition of the Japanese Public Speaking Contest. He also expressed how much he looked forward to the ways each participant interpreted this year’s theme ‘Something I treasure/私が大切にしているもの’ for their speeches. In addition, he mentioned his enduring appreciation for the heartfelt support Japan received from the Netherlands in the wake of the Great East Japan Earthquake which struck six years ago.
There was an overwhelming number of applications for this year’s edition and 24 contestants held their speech in front of more than a hundred people who came as audience. Since this year’s theme was abstract and quite open to interpretation, the participants showed their Japanese proficiency by giving speeches about a variety of topics; from valuing experiences, to the appreciation of a loved one or the importance of relations between people.
After the contestants were finished and the judges had deliberated, there was a special speech by Mr. Florian Linthout, who won the Grand Prize in 2000.
It was an opportunity to realize how interesting and difficult Japanese can be and how fun it is to share and exchange thoughts with other people, in front of a jury and audience.
The Winners
The Grand Prize: Mr. Hamza El-Kebir
The Yosakoi Kochi Prize: Ms. Maggi Bisschop
The Excellence Prize: Ms. Diandra Geleijnse
The Excellence Prize: Mr. Pim te Rietmole
The Special Prize: Ms. Kelly Schotte
The Special Prize: Ms. Phuong Verra
The Encouragement Prize: Mr. Kariem El-Desowky