The Institute of Strategic Studies Islamabad (ISSI) organized a Public Talk under its Distinguished Ambassador’s series on November 7, 2017 titled “Japan-Pakistan Relationship: 65 Years and Beyond.” The guest speaker at the occasion was Japanese Ambassador to Pakistan H.E. Mr. Takashi Kurai.
Welcoming the speaker and the guests, Ambassador Khalid Mahmood, Chairman ISSI reflected on the cultural commonalties and history of bilateral ties between Japan and Pakistan. He spoke about traces and impact of ancient Buddha civilisation in the South Asian region including Pakistan. Ambassador Mahmood said the history of the bilateral relations with Japan began with the ratification of the San Francisco Peace Treaty. Pakistan, he said, supported Japan at many international forums and quickly ratified the Peace Treaty, thus beginning the formal diplomatic relations in 1952. While talking about trade and economic relations between Pakistan and Japan, he said that Pakistan’s first ever trade agreement was signed with Japan under which Pakistan was the largest exporter of coal to Japan in those early years. In this way, Ambassador Khalid said, Pakistan had played some part in Japanese restoration after the war. He reminded the audience about President’s Ayub visit to Japan in December 1960 where he was personally received by the Emperor himself, which was an extraordinary welcome.