Greeting from the President of Yokohama City University
|Tsutomu Fuse, Prof. Dr.
|Ladies and Gentlemen,
As the president of Yokohama City University, I would like to express my sincere welcome to all of you to Yokohama, especially to the guests from overseas. In this particular occasion it is my privilege to give you a short speech at the opening of the PUL International Seminar.
This year, 2009 is a very special year for the City of Yokohama, for the Universities located in this city, and for all the citizens of Yokohama as well. This year we celebrate the 150 Years Anniversary of the opening of the Port of Yokohama to the world, after a long and deep sleep of national isolationism.
In 1854, the negotiations to end the Japanese Isolation Policy between the US Delegation led by Commodore Perry of the US navy and the Japanese Delegation of the Tokugawa Shogunate Government led by Hayashi Daigakunokami, Ambassador Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary of Japan, took place at a very small fishing village called “Yokohama Mura”, now developed into this big city of Yokohama. In fact, the US navy fleet was at anchor very near from our university.
But the negotiations were not an easy one. After a difficult and persisitent high-quality negotiation, the two governments agreed to conclude the treaty peacefully without any cannon shots, and as a result, it was possible to sign the “Treaty of Peace and Amity between United States of America and the Empire of Japan”.
That was the moment of “change” not only for Japan but also for other countries including USA. It was the starting point for the creation of a coordination mechanism of the human society in the world, which has developed into different kinds of international systems of the present day, in which the city of Yokohama has played a leading role for the modernization of this country.
I understand that the last 150 years were really a great era for Japan and for the Japanese society. And this is absolutely the time to start again a “New Era”. I strongly believe that we have to create this New Era by our initiatives. Therefore, as I mentioned at the beginning of my speech, we have a very unique opportunity.
As the president of Yokohama City University, I wish PUL (Port-city University League) to develop and vitalize much more. And I also want to give my wishes for success to this ambitious seminar.
Thank you very much for your kind attention.