The Imperial Household Agency in Japan has announced that on3rd September, the engagement will be announced of Princess Mako and her long-term boyfriend, Kei Komuro. It is understood that the couple will address the media on this happy occasion. The engagement was originally going to be announced on 8th July. However, the couple decided that it was appropriate to delay the announcement given the torrential rain and subsequent heavy property damage in the south-western prefectures.
Princess Mako is the granddaughter of Emperor Akihito and daughter of Prince Akishino and Princess Kiko. Both the Princess and her boyfriend are 25 and met whilst they were students at the International Christian University in Mitaka, Tokyo, in around 2012. Kei currently works for a law firm in Central Tokyo and is understood to have proposed to her after they went out together for about a year. The Princess graduated from the university with a bachelor’s degree in Art & Cultural Heritage; she later travelled to the United Kingdom and completed a master’s degree in Museum Studies at Leicester University.
Prior to the announcement, the Emperor will carry out the necessary procedure to approve the marriage. The last marriage of a daughter or granddaughter of the Emperor was Sayako Kuroda’s wedding in 2005. This will be the first of many ceremonies that will occur between now and the wedding which is expected to be in 2018. This could be a year of changes for the Imperial Family as it could also mark the abdication of Emperor Akihito.
The Imperial Family belong to the Shinto tradition, and the betrothal will follow the traditional rite of “Nosai no Gi”. This involves a representative of Kei going to the residence of Princess Mako to not only give a vow that Kei will marry Princess Mako but also bring betrothal gifts with him.
Princess Mako is currently on a private trip to Hungary with her father, Prince Akishino.