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  • President Ma meets Japan-ROC Diet Members' Consultative Council Chairman Takeo Hiranuma
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President Ma meets Japan-ROC Diet Members' Consultative Council Chairman Takeo Hiranuma. President Ma exchanges ideas with Chairman Takeo Hiranuma. President Ma welcomes Chairman Takeo Hiranuma.
During a meeting with Japan-ROC Diet Members' Consultative Council Chairman Takeo Hiranuma on the morning of March 19, President Ma Ying-jeou stated that Taiwan's National Palace Museum is poised to hold an exhibition of items from its collection between June and September 2014 at a national museum in Tokyo.

During his discussions with Representative Hiranuma, the president noted that the Japanese parliament last year passed the Law Concerning Promotion of Exhibitions of Art Objects from Overseas, which prevents the impounding of art from other nations that is on public display. This was a crucial step in removing potential hazards for the display of artworks from Taiwan in Japan. If all goes smoothly, the National Palace Museum will show selected items from its collection at a national museum in Tokyo from June to September of 2014. The president also expressed his hopes that major museums in Tokyo will exhibit their treasures in Taiwan, as this would further strengthen cultural exchanges and interaction between the two nations.

President Ma also thanked Representative Hiranuma for congratulating him on winning another term as president. Rather than emphasizing the win as a personal victory, the president said it constituted a public endorsement of the government's achievements in generating economic prosperity, clean and competent government, and peace in the Taiwan Strait, as well as work to improve relations between Taiwan and the United States, Japan, and other nations.

President Ma furthermore stated that relations between Taiwan and Japan have developed smoothly in recent years, and the two sides have signed a Taiwan-Japan Friendship Initiative, a Taiwan-Japan Bilateral Investment Arrangement, and an open skies agreement. Tourism between the two countries, he pointed out, has been especially strong, citing data showing that Taiwanese made 1.14 million visits to Japan last year, while Japanese made 1.29 million visits to Taiwan. This marked the first time that the number of Japanese visitors to Taiwan outpaced the number of Taiwanese travelling to Japan. The president commented that on March 12 he attended a reception held by the Taipei Office of the Japan Interchange Association to remember the victims of the Great East Japan Earthquake of March 11, 2011 and to thank Taiwan for the assistance it has provided. At that event, the president announced that Taiwan has decided to immediately lift its travel alert for Fukushima Prefecture , except for the areas within a 30-kilometer radius of the Fukushima Daiichi Nuclear Power Station. This move is aimed at aiding in the development of Japan's tourism industry.

The president also briefed Representative Hiranuma on the background and expertise of new Chairman of the Association of East Asian Relations Liao Liou-yi (廖了以) and outgoing Vice Minister of Foreign Affairs Shen Ssu-tsun (沈斯淳) (who will become Taiwan's new representative to Japan). President Ma expressed his expectations that the efforts of these two individuals, combined with the assistance of Japan, will help to ensure a continued strong friendship between the two sides.

Representative Hiranuma, together with Japan-ROC Diet Members’ Consultative Council Vice Chairman Hiroshi Nakai and Chief Secretary Takao Fujii, were accompanied to the Presidential Office by Japan Interchange Association Taipei Office Chief Representative Tadashi Imai to meet President Ma. Also attending the meeting were Association of East Asian Relations Chairman Liao, Vice Minister of Foreign Affairs Shen, and National Security Council Advisor Lee Chia-chin (李嘉進).
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