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Message from the president

会長写真オリジナル WEB用 Yasunori Yamamoto

Shimadzu Europa GmbH

It is a great honor for me to be elected as the new president of the JBCE. Founded in 1999, JBCE has been contributed to EU public policy in a constructive way for more than 15 years. Under the ten presidencies preceding my own, the number of member companies has grown from 20 to almost 80. This reflects the importance of JBCE´s role, which has been recognized by both Japan and the EU. For this I would like to take this occasion to thank all of my predecessors.

I have worked in Shimadzu for more than 30 years. Before my appointment as Managing Director of Shimadzu Europa GmbH three years ago, I served as member of the international and Japanese standardization committees (ISO and JIS), as well as a director of the Japan Testing Machinery Association, vice-president of the Material Testing Research Association of Japan and others. During that time, I frequently visited the EU. This allowed me to understand the functioning of the EU Institutions and larger system, as well as a chance to discover the history, culture, and people in Europe. In my experience the EU is one of the most important world players, especially in terms of standardization of a wide range of subjects such as environment, food safety and digital areas. Moreover, the EU is a prominent economy, a leader in innovation and sustainable growth and development in the world.

Today the EU must grapple with unprecedented challenges. Several countries in the Eurozone are mired in financial deficit, among them Greece is visibly struggling to resurface from the government-debt crisis. Wave after wave of refugees are arriving, causing policy disagreements between Member States. Likewise, terrorism has rattled European cities such as Paris, Brussels and Nice. Following the outcome of the Referendum of UK on the EU Membership on 23 June, the EU now faces existential questions and uncharted—and potentially longwinded—procedures to extract the UK. Given these circumstances, JBCE, as a member of the European business community, encourages the EU and the UK to engage in practical and constructive negotiations to stabilize the business environment in Europe.

JBCE also would like to express the importance of deepening the relationship between Europe and Japan to the benefit of business operating in both Europe and Japan. In this vein, we support the earliest possible conclusion on the EU-Japan Economic Partnership Agreement (EPA) and the Free Trade Agreement (FTA) as an important milestone. I hope that both sides will do all they can to conclude negotiations within 2016.

JBCE respects the EU’s advanced legislation in some policy areas, such as environmental protection and human health and safety. We have to learn more about basic European conceptions of these matters to deepen mutual understanding between the EU and Japan in an effort to create a common regulatory framework. For our part JBCE will continue to contribute in constructive way to EU legislation with our unique expertise drawn from the nature of the organization with its members of European companies of Japanese parentage.

Finally, as president of JBCE, I promise to take an active role in representing interests of members, contributing to the development of the European business, and promoting responsible business conduct in the EU and Japan together with all stakeholders. I would like, together with you, to build a stable bridge between Japan and the EU.

Yasunori  Yamamoto