Opening event: 25 years of representing the Free State of Bavaria in Japan

The opening event of the 25-year anniversary of Bavaria's foreign representative office in Japan was held on 4th March 2013 in Munich

MUNICH - The opening event of the 25-year anniversary of Bavaria's foreign representative office in Japan was held on 4th March 2013 as a cooperation between Invest in Bavaria, the Japanese Consulate General in Munich, the German-Japanese Society Bavaria, the Japanese International School Munich and the Ostpreußenschule, a school for Bavarian-Japanese friendship.

Bavaria opened the very first of its foreign representative offices in Tokyo, Japan, 25 years ago. There are now over 20 around the world. Around 330 Japanese companies have set up premises in Bavaria since the office was set up. With around 6,500 Japanese people (of whom around 3,600 are in Munich and around 300 in Nuremberg) and its own Japanese schools, the Japanese community in Bavaria is now the second largest in Germany. Events will take place throughout the year in both Bavaria and Japan to celebrate this anniversary year.

At today's opening event at the Ostpreußenschule in Munich, Dr. Christian Geltinger, Foreign Representative of the Free State of Bavaria in Japan, the Japanese Consul General in Munich Akira Mizutani and the President of the German-Japanese Society Dr. Oliver Schön spoke on topics including business relations between Bavaria and Japan, the current situation in Japan and the friendship between Bavaria and Japan.
As a symbol of Bavarian-Japanese friendship, the children of the Ostpreußenschule sang the Girls' Day song in Japanese, to celebrate the Japanese Girls' Day or Hinamatsuri festival held every year on 3rd March, while the children of the Japanese International School sang the Bavarian state anthem in German. The entire programme was framed by a performance of traditional spring songs on the koto, a Japanese musical instrument best described as a zither with a curved wooden body.

The next event of this anniversary year, a business meeting on the invitation of the Bavarian representative office, will take place in Tokyo, Japan, in May.