(Credit: Cabinet Public Relations Office)

Meeting with U.S. President-Elect Trump

Prime Minister Shinzo Abe met with President-Elect of the United States Donald Trump at Trump Tower in New York on Nov. 17. 
Read more here:

(Credit: Cabinet Public Relations Office)

Japan-U.S. Foreign Ministers' Meeting Held

Foreign Minister Fumio Kishida and U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry held talks on the sidelines of the APEC Peru 2016 meeting. Both nations will continue to strengthen their bilateral alliance, affirmed Kishida and Kerry.

Japan Ratifies Paris Climate Agreement

Japan ratified the Paris Agreement on Nov. 8 by submitting its instrument of acceptance to the Secretary-General of the United Nations. The agreement, adopted at the 21st Session of the Conference of the parties to the U.N. Framework Convention on Climate Change on Dec. 12, 2015, calls for cuts in greenhouse gas emissions to fight climate change.
To learn more:

JET Program 30th Anniversary Feted in Tokyo

The Japan Exchange and Teaching (JET) Program marked its 30th Anniversary in Tokyo with a special commemorative ceremony on Nov. 7 attended by Their Imperial Highnesses The Crown Prince and The Crown Princess. In his remarks, The Crown Prince praised the program for encouraging cultural exchanges through interactions between JET participants and local communities in Japan. Furthermore, JET Program alumni can help create bridges between Japan and other nations, he noted.



Fall 2016 Fall Decorations Conferred

On Nov. 3, the Japanese government announced the recipients of its Fall 2016 decorations. From within our jurisdiction, the decorations were awarded to Mr. Tak Takehiro Nishi and Mrs. Kay Kayoko Inose. 

Mr. Tak Takehiro Nishi



Mrs. Kay Kayoko Inose



Japanese Agricultural Association Honors Mr. Ross Koda of Koda Farms

California's oldest family-owned and managed rice farm, established in 1928, has decades of achievements to be proud of in their quest to cultivate and process top-grade Japanese style rice in the U.S. On Nov. 29, the Japanese Agricultural Association (Dai Nihon Nokai) honored Mr. Ross Koda of Koda Farms for their three generations of excellence and contributions to agriculture. 

Mastering Sushi with Chef Kazato

Sushi can now be found in restaurants all over the world, and Chef Masayoshi Kazato, as Japan's Cuisine Goodwill Ambassador, wants to help make sure that it's being done right. On Nov. 15 in Culver City, dozens of attendees from the food and restaurant industry gathered for his intensive seminar on authentic techniques and tips to bring their sushi skills up to the next level. Read more about Chef Kazato and his quest to enhance sushi worldwide here:

Japan's Green Technology Cooperation and Solutions to be Showcased at the 10th Annual VerdeXchange Conference in Los Angeles!

With continuous cooperation over the past 10 years with the Consulate General of Japan in Los Angeles, VerdeXchange has become the premier political/regulatory/business green technology conference for California. Many Japanese firms will be represented to inform of best practices and technology solutions being deployed in Japan and throughout the world. The conference takes place Jan. 29-31 in downtown Los Angeles. For videos of past panel discussions and more details, see here:

Industrial Design Takes Center Stage at ArtCenter College of Design Lecture by Professor from Japan

On Nov. 4, Shunji Yamanaka, professor of industrial design at the University of Tokyo, gave a lecture to students, faculty and other guests at the ArtCenter College of Design in Pasadena, CA. He talked about his career thus far as an industrial designer and more recent focus on 3D-printed prototypes of mobile robots.

Panel Discussion on Women's Empowerment Held

The Consulate General of Japan in Los Angeles hosted a symposium and panel discussion examining how empowerment of women in East Asia and the U.S. fuels economic growth. Consul General Chiba offered welcoming remarks at the event, which featured speakers from academia, as well as the public and private sectors, who discussed equal pay issues and other topics.

Legendary Actor Toshiro Mifune Presented with Star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame

Toshiro Mifune, best known for his portrayal of samurai in film, was awarded a posthumous star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame on Nov. 14 by the Hollywood Chamber of Commerce. Mifune's grandson, Rikiya Mifune, accepted the award on his family's behalf, thanking those in attendance for recognizing his grandfather's career and accomplishments.

To find out more:

Nebuta Float at the Hollywood Christmas Parade

The Nebuta Float delighted parade-goers at the 85th Annual Hollywood Christmas parade held Nov. 27. If you missed the Nebuta Float and its lights, please check out the video below. A pre-recorded version of the entire parade will also air on Dec. 16 on the CW Network.

Embassy of Japan 2017 New Year's Card Contest

Get ready for the coming Year of the Rooster by entering the seventh annual New Year's Card Contest held by the Japan Information and Culture Center at the Embassy of Japan, Washington, D.C. The deadline to enter is December 12.
Find out more about contest rules and how to enter:

Japan-Related Films Showing in Los Angeles

In the mood for a documentary film or other movie? Here are some showing in Los Angeles this month:

Mifune: The Last Samurai
Directed by Academy Award-winning Director Steven Okazaki, the documentary about the career of Toshiro Mifune will be shown at Laemmle's Ahrya Fine Arts from Dec. 2
For more information and movie showtimes -- LINK

Behind the Cove
Directed by Keiko Yagi, the film is a rebuttal to the Academy Award-winning film THE COVE. Showing in Los Angeles at the Laemmle Music Hall starting Dec. 2
For more information and movie showtimes -- LINK

Your Name.
Directed by Makoto Shinkai, the animated movie will be shown in Los Angeles at the Laemmle Music Hall from Dec. 2.
For more information and movie showtimes -- LINK

Samurai Rebellion
For one day only, this classic 1967 film starring Toshiro Mifune will be shown at Laemmle's Ahrya Fine Arts on Dec. 3
For more information  -- LINK

Mochi-tsuki for the New Year

Mochi-tsuki, or pounding rice to make mochi (rice cakes), is an important traditional event in preparation for the New Year. It's usually performed at the end of the year, from around December 25 to 28. Making mochi is simple. A special type of sticky rice is placed in an usu, a large bowl made of wood or stone. A heavy, hammer-like kine is used to pound the rice into paste. The rice in the usu needs to be shifted, with hands moistened to prevent the mochi from sticking, to ensure evenness.
After the mochi are completed, some are set aside as divine offerings. The decorative kagami mochi - two flat, round mochi placed one on top of the other, with the lower mochi being slightly larger- represents the seat of the New Year deities.

For information about the Consulate General of Japan in Los Angeles' year-end holiday schedule, please see here:

http://www.la.us.emb-japan.go.jp/ | info@ls.mofa.go.jp
Consulate General of Japan, Los Angeles