Message from ISOMATA Akio, Ambassador Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary of Japan to the United Arab Emirates


Let us support the youth for our brighter future!

PART 2YAP and H.H. Sheikh Khalid’s visit to Japan

(October 2022)



With promising Emirati students
(at the YAP Japan orientation, August)


With Sheikh Khalid just back from Japan
(at ADIHEX 2022, September)


As we mark the 50th anniversary of Japan-UAE diplomatic relations this year, I am so glad to see that the Youth Ambassadors Program run by the UAE government started for Japan (The YAP Japan). This is a 1 to 1.5 year program for providing support to Emirati undergraduates who may want to study in Japan at a graduate level (degree courses mainly taught in English) after finishing their undergraduate studies in the UAE. Participants of the program are given opportunities to attend Japanese language and culture classes in the UAE, to make a short familiarization trip to Japan, and to receive counseling services for studying in Japan and post-study career. The UAE has already been running a similar program with a few other countries, and Japan joined from this year.


For the YAP Japan program this year which started in July and assists students who will be studying in Japan from autumn 2023(Master’s degree courses), I was told that the selection process took a long time because there were an unexpectedly large number of applicants. In late August, I participated in an orientation session for those students successfully selected and excited over a possibility of studying in Japan as part of their future career. The session was organized by the UAE side and the Japan International Cooperation Center (JICE), which helps implementing the program on the Japanese side. What I said to the students there as encouragement mainly consists of the following three things:


(WAM article on The YAP Japan: 21 Emirati participants were selected for 1st Youth Ambassadors Programme between UAE, Japan”)


Advantages of studying in Japan

You can learn the state-of-the-art science and technology in a high QOL environment and in a world top-class country well evidenced in the number of Nobel laureates in science fields such as physiology and medicine. You can also have a first-hand experience of living in a society where industry, academia and the government are closely cooperating with each other to support the vibrant private sector.


Advantages of living in Japan

You can open up a variety of windows on a new world by placing yourself in a cross-cultural environment. You are sure to find in Japan what you will be really fond of, be it changing beauty of nature and scenery in four different seasons, various forms of traditional art each with a long history, pop culture like manga and animated films, or any other things Japanese. Experiencing different cultures in local cities rich in their own distinct features can also be eye-opening.


How can studying in Japan help you building your future career?

Even as we face an increasingly uncertain world, two things are sure to happen: we are heading for a low-carbon and decarbonized society, and; our economy will be more and more knowledge-based. In such a world, what is indispensable is an ability to continuously generate innovation. By studying in Japan, you can acquire knowledge and skills to cope with ever-changing situations, expand your world through cross-cultural experience, open up new opportunities for self-fulfillment, and thus will certainly be able to enhance your ability for innovation.


Starting from October 11, Japan eased coronavirus-related border restrictions in a sweeping way, abolishing the capping for daily visitors from overseas and suspension of entry by individual (non-package tour) sight-seeing tourists. Another good piece of news is that Japan has decided to introduce a visa exemption measure for UAE ordinary passport holders. This decision of the Japanese government was conveyed to H.H. Sheikh Khalid bin Mohammed bin Zayed by PM Kishida when His Highness visited Japan in late September to attend the state funeral for the late PM Abe. Details have now been worked out, and this visa exemption measure will become effective on November 1, 2022. These developments will certainly resume and expand extensive people-to people exchanges between the two countries, and I hope this will also further promote bilateral youth exchanges .


On the occasion of the above-mentioned visit by H.H. Sheikh Khalid, Joint Declaration on the Implementation of Comprehensive Strategic Partnership Initiative (CSPI) was also signed between the relevant cabinet ministers of the both countries. By the signing of this document, it is announced that a ministerial committee as well as five subcommittees will be established to identify and promote concrete cooperative projects in line with the objectives of the CSPI launched in 2018. Among the five subcommittee is the “Education, Science, Technology and Culture Subcommittee,” and enhancement of exchange and training programs for Japanese and Emirati students is expected to be discussed in this subcommittee. I believe the establishment of implementation mechanism for the CSPI at this juncture is very timely to further promote educational and people-to-people exchanges, especially when the border restrictions for entering Japan is removed and when we will be starting the first year of next half-century of Japan-UAE relations in a few months. No matter in what social sector we are working, we need to continue to support these exchanges together for our future prosperity, and I ask for your continuous support. Let us carry on!


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