Two years have passed since my taking office as the Ambassador of Japan to the Republic of Uganda. Time indeed flies like an arrow or a bullet train-Shinkansen as if the new year were celebrated just a few weeks ago. Now the Year of 2018 reaches almost the midway point. One of most exciting events during this half-year period is surely the centre closure of 525m long bridge deck (girder) of the New Nile Bridge along with its supporting stay cables in April. Following the completion of the entire works, the traffic can be expected to flow on the New Nile Bridge in a few months. A more recent one is the working visit by Hon. Sam Kutesa, Minister of Foreign Affairs, to Japan on 3rd of June. The Minister had talks over dinner with Mr. Taro Kono, his counterpart, and visited JICA, JBIC and other State agencies as well as had a series of meetings with executives of the companies which have business relations with Uganda. Hon. Minister Kutesa’s visit to Japan was for the first time in 9 years as a bilateral visit. Hon.Kutesa appears to have a forward-looking response in the potentials for the development of Japan-Uganda relations. I would also like to touch upon the ceremony of the bestowment of the Order of the Rising Sun, Gold and Silver Star upon Hon. James Baba at the Parliament on 12th June. This ceremony was witnessed by Rt. Hon. Rebecca Kadaga, Speaker of the Parliament. Hon. Baba was the Ambassador of Uganda to Japan between 2001 and 2005. This recognition has been resulted from his extraordinary contributions to the bilateral relations not only as the resident ambassador in Japan but also his contributions to the relations during his tenures of a member of the Parliament as well as Ministers of State in two portfolios.
The Embassy of Japan is determined to extend any possible support for further development of Japan-Uganda relations. I wish all of you good health and success in your respective fields.