34th Annual Joint Meeting
OCTOBER 16-19, 2010
Nashville, Tennessee

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Joint Statement for October 19, 2010

The Japan-U.S. Southeast Association and the Southeast U.S./Japan Association held their 34th Annual Joint Meeting in Nashville, Tennessee, October 16 to 19, 2010, with the theme of “In Harmony with Tradition and Innovation.” The Chairmen presiding over the meeting were SEUS Chairman Jack O. Bovender, Jr. and the Japan Chairman, Hiromasa Yonekura. Japanese and American delegates and spouses participated this year for a total of 551 delegates.

We were honored by the presence of the SEUS state delegation leaders—the Honorable Phil Bredesen, Governor, the State of Tennessee, this year’s host state; the Honorable Beverly Perdue, Governor, the State of North Carolina; the Honorable Haley Barbour, Governor, the State of Mississippi; the Honorable Jeff Kottkamp, Lieutenant Governor, the State of Florida; the Honorable Hugh K. Leatherman, Senior State Senator of South Carolina; Mr. James S. Cheng, Secretary of Commerce and Trade, the Commonwealth of Virginia; Ms. Heidi Green, Commissioner of Economic Development of the State of Georgia; Mr. Neal Wade, Secretary of Commerce of the State of Alabama -- and also by the participation of Ambassador Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary of Japan to the U.S., His Excellency Ichiro Fujisaki; and the Consuls General of Japan: the Honorable Takuji Hanatani from Atlanta; the Honorable Yoshiharu Namiki from Miami; and the Honorable Hiroshi Sato from Nashville.

In the Opening Ceremony, Chairman Bovender began the Joint Meeting by recognizing the shared values of tradition and innovation that are cherished by the people of Japan and the southeastern United States, and spoke about how these values can be used as platforms for achieving mutual progress.

Chairman Yonekura made opening remarks on the status of the Japanese economy, stating that it needs to be revitalized by a dynamic private sector, and as the world’s innovation leaders the United States and Japan should cooperate in promoting innovation and create new products, services and technologies together.

Following the opening ceremony was the Plenary Keynote Address by Scott Becker, Senior Vice President of Administration and Finance, Nissan North America, Inc. Mr. Becker addressed Nissan’s role in the changing global economy and its global corporate leadership.

At the Luncheon Program, we were privileged to hear a keynote speech by His Excellency Ambassador Ichiro Fujisaki, who gave an overview of the current status of the Asia-Pacific economies and discussed the outlook for the Japanese economy. He stressed the importance of the relations between Japan and the United States, and called for the U.S.’s active participation in Asia’s regional efforts to promote stable and sustainable economic growth.

Panel members in the first panel session that afternoon, “Transportation for the New Millennium,” shared their views on how Japan and the Southeastern states could partner together to meet the challenges of the changing transportation sector. Panel members included: moderator Mr. Page Siplon, Executive Director of Center for Innovation and Logistics; Mr. Yoji Ohashi, Chairman, All Nippon Airways; Mr. Shoichi Abbe, President of Sumitomo Warehouse; and Mr. Scott Hercik, Transportation and Trade Advisor, Appalachian Regional Commission.

A second afternoon panel session, “Renewable Energy: Innovation in Practice,” addressed opportunities for partnership and growth in the emerging global clean technology marketplace. Panel members included: moderator Mr. Matt Kisber, Commissioner of Tennessee Economic & Community Development; Mr. Kozo Takahashi, Chairman and CEO of Sharp Electronics Corporation and Group General Manager, North & South America Group, Sharp Corporation; Mr. Masao Yamazaki, Executive Vice President, Tokyo Electric Power Company; Mr. Mitsuaki Yahagi, Chairman of The Japan Research Institute, Ltd.; and Dr. Marilyn Brown, Professor, School of Public Policy, Georgia Institute of Technology.

Tuesday, October 19th, started with the third panel session, “Global Identity: Building a Worldwide Brand with Staying Power,” which included: moderator Mr. Jim Hizer, CEO & President of Pensacola Bay Area Chamber of Commerce; Mr. Tetsuya Kobayashi, President of Imperial Hotel, Ltd.; Mr. Dave Berryman, President of Gibson Guitar Corporation; and Mr. Brian Waldrop, Chief Financial Officer and Senior Vice President of Viking Range Corporation. Panel members discussed their companies’ successful approaches to leadership in the global marketplace.

The Plenary Keynote Address, “Forecast 2011: Perspectives on the Japanese and Southeastern U.S. Economies,” was given by Mr. Yasuo Hayashi, Chairman, the Japan External Trade Organization (JETRO), and Mr. Dennis Lockhart, President & CEO, the Federal Reserve Bank of Atlanta.

Throughout the program, we exchanged views and opinions with our guest experts and delegates, and deepened our understanding on issues of mutual interest, such as the outlook for our economies and businesses in these times of globalization and the challenges and innovation in the fields of transportation and energy. Both Associations reaffirmed their commitment to work together to further strengthen the ties between Japan and the Southeast U.S. states, and to contribute to achieving sustainable growth of both the Japanese and U.S economies as well as the entire global economy.

In the Closing Ceremony, it was announced that the 35th Annual Joint Meeting will be held in Tokyo, Japan, October 16-18, 2011.

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