The delegation from Ghent consisted of the mayor and Bart Rosseau who works for the Policy Strategy and International Cooperation Department.
After their arrival in Tokyo, a short meeting was held at the headquarters of Honda which also has a subsidiary in Ghent. During the meeting, Honda employees expressed their appreciation of the cooperation they have with the port of Ghent and the city’s local authority.
The delegation arrived in Kanazawa on Thursday evening where Mayor Termont was invited to a dinner with the management of the Department of Cultural Exchanges of Kanazawa.
After a lecture about social welfare, Friday morning the Ghent delegation visited Mayor Yamade. Willem Van de Voorde, official representative of the Belgian Embassy in Japan, joined the delegation. Lunch was followed by a visit to the Museum of the 21st Century and to the Myouryuu-ji temple. The climax of the visit was undoubtedly the “The floating of the Kaga Yuzen lanterns”, the opening event of the Hyakumangoku festival, followed by a dinner with Mayor Yamade.
The Ghent delegation paid a visit on Saturday morning to the No theatre school for children and the No theatre museum. A busy programme followed with visits to the Prefectural Concert Hall, Kenrokuen garden and the twinned cities park. Both mayors discussed the future of the twinning relationship. In the late afternoon, Mayor Termont watched the famous Hyakumangoku parade.
Sunday is not a day of rest in Japan. In the morning, the guests from Ghent attended a folklore presentation and visited the Nakamura Museum of Remembrance. The afternoon was devoted to festivities in the castle of Kanazawa and a visit to the Higashi chayagai tea district. The official visit was rounded off on Sunday evening with an open-air presentation of the Hyakumangoku No theatre.
Mayor Termont invited his Japanese colleague to pay a reciprocal visit to Ghent in October.
This visit represents a new boost for the twinning relationship which has been in existence since 1971. Both mayors agreed to work closer together on cultural projects in the future. During the Japanese mayor’s visit in October, they intend to consolidate this intention in the form of a signed agreement.