Reception for the Celebration of the Emperor’s Birthday (February 20, 2020)
On February 20, 2020, Ambassador Horinouchi and his wife held a reception at the Ambassador’s residence in honour of the Emperor’s Birthday on 23 February, the first time since the enthronement of the new Emperor. The reception was attended by around 330 guests from the diplomatic corps and international organizations, as well as officials from the Dutch Government, representatives of various business circles and the Japanese community in the Netherlands.
At the beginning of the reception, both the Japanese and Dutch national anthem were sung by Japanese opera singer Ms. Makuuchi Tomoko, who has chosen The Netherlands as the main focus of her performances. The Ambassador’s speech confirmed how strong the Japanese-Dutch relations have been up until now and expressed the wish to further strengthen these ties from now on.
During the reception, stands lined the walls representing companies from various industries, such as Japanese food, ‘sake’ and ‘awamori’ (Hokkai Suisan, Yakult, Clip Creative, Blueship Okinawa, and Netherland Fukushima kai), tourism (JTB, Hotel Okura), and airlines (JAL, ANA). With the cooperation of these companies, it was the perfect opportunity to promote Japan, which was very well-received by the guests. Moreover, because this year the Olympic and Paralympic Games Tokyo 2020 will be hosted in Japan, there was also a special booth with promotional material.