Japan’s Crown Prince Naruhito is to embark on an official five-day visit to Malaysia. This trip lasting from 13-17 April is to mark 60 years of formal diplomatic ties between the two countries.
This is a significant anniversary, and much has been accomplished since the establishment of these formal relations in 1957. According to the New Strait Times, “bilateral relations have been strengthened through the implementation of the Look East Policy, economic relations, cultural and people-to-people exchanges.”
Ahead of his visit, the Crown Prince was reported to have said, “It is a very good opportunity to promote mutual understanding as well as friendship and goodwill.”
He was also reported to have remarked that such trips were an “extremely important task of the Imperial Household.”
His Imperial Highness added, “I would like to promote international goodwill, treasuring the thoughts of the Emperor and Empress.”
This is the first official visit to Malaysia for the Crown Prince; he will meet with various politicians, royals, and Japanese and Malaysian students. His visit will begin with a banquet held in his honour which is to be hosted by the Yang di-Pertuan Agong Sultan Muhammad V and Prime Minister Najib Razak. He will first pay tribute to fallen soldiers at the National Monument. Afterwards, he will visit the Pusat Permata Pintar to learn about the highly gifted children the school serves; he will also meet students.
Naruhito will also head to Universiti Malaya where he is scheduled to give a speech. There, he will meet students who are going to study in Japan and those who have already studied in his home country. The ceremony will close with the planting of a tree. At the end of his second day, a reception will be held at the St Regis Hotel Kuala Lumpur. This celebration will be to mark the 60th anniversary of the formal diplomatic ties between Japan and Malaysia.
Saturday will see His Imperial Highness visit the Japanese School of Kuala Lumpur (JSKL), which is located in Selangor. Naruhito will next have a luncheon with Malaysian Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak at the Prime Minister’s Office in Putrajaya. He will then return to Kuala Lumpur to visit the Stormwater Management and Road Tunnel (SMART Tunnel) Control Centre.
On Saturday evening, at the residence of the Ambassador of Japan, Crown Prince Naruhito will grant an audience with the Japan Overseas Cooperation Volunteers (JOCV). He will also meet Japanese residents in Malaysia.
Sunday will see him at the National Museum. His next stop will be at Japan Club Kuala Lumpur for the 14th Japanese Speech Contest for Secondary School (2017); the aim of the competition is to demonstrate the proficiency of Malaysian students between the ages of 15-18 of the Japanese language. They will all give a speech in Japanese to show their skill with the language. The theme will be “if things could talk.”
The next in line to the throne is scheduled to give an audience to descendants in Malaysia at the St Regis Hotel Kuala Lumpur before paying a ‘courtesy call’ to the King and attend a state banquet to be held at Istana Negara. On Monday, Crown Prince Naruhito will return to Japan.