Tourist & Resident Guide to Iran

Thursday, July 17, 2008

Iran-Japan Relations

When President Khatami visited Tokyo in 2000, he was the first Iranian leader to visit Japan since King Reza Shah Pahlavi in 1958. At the time, he and the Japanese premier, Mr Mori, made plans for friendly relations and greater economic cooperation.

According to official Iranian statistics, the volume of bilateral trade between Japan and Iran reached US$14.3 billion in 2007 and this is expected to increase to US$20 billionin 2008 as a result of rising oil prices.

At the people-to-people level, things look positive. There are 5,227 Iranians officially registered as living in Japan and around 300 Iranian students. According to Ambassador Araqchi, academic exchanges between the two countries 'play a vital role for further deepening of our relations.' Culturally, there has also been some interesting collaboration in areas such as cinema - for instance, the 2003 movie 'Kaze no Jutan' (The Wind Carpet).

Japan is also active in Iran holding events such as Noh theater performances and recently hosting a ceremony at its embassy in Tehran at which it presented equipment for a charitable project, for the benefit of children with intellectual disabilities.

Ambassador Araqchi is optimistic for the future, declaring: 'We would like to expand our regional and international cooperation with Japan. At the same time, we are looking forward to seeing further expansion of economic, technological and cultural cooperation with our Japanese partners.'

This is a shortened version of a longer article on J@panInc

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