Lunch meeting in November 2014

RJC had the last lunch meeting 2014 on 18 November. Probably because the JCC chairman and Managing Director of Mizuho Bank Mr Yano was the guest speaker, we had 30 attenders including Ambassador Tsuji, the biggest number of the attenders this year. After opening greeting from Mr van der Goot, the two new members introduced themselves by interesting stories; Mr Tamai (Bank of Tokyo-Mitsubishi UFJ) and Mr Shimoda (Panasonic Biomedical Sales Europe). Besides three guests were brought out to RJC members; Mr Sano (Teijin) , Mr Kool and Mr Matsumoto (Emori Shoji). The title of Mr Yano’s presentation was “Overview of the European Economy”, which showed European economic movement mainly based on Germany and UK. Those two countries proved their strength in 2014 while overall European economic growth would continue but only slowly hereafter too. Mr Yano pointed out that deflation risks and the wage were the key factors in the Euro Area. His lecture was suggestive for all the business persons in the Netherlands and the meeting was a big success. We promised to see each other at New Year’s Party again.

Lunch meeting in September 2014

On Tuesday 23 September RJC had a lunch meeting with Minister Kikuta. Mr van der Goot welcomed everybody as usual and introduced two new members; Mr Hiroshima (Nippon Express), and Mr Murakami (Sankyu Europe). Mr Hiroshima has been a member of RJC Board, too. As we were rather a small group with 17 attenders, we enjoyed talking a lot each other. After the lunch Mr Paddy Rommer, Commercial Manager of Konninglijk Nederlandse Baseball en Softball Bond (KNBSB), talked about the baseball in the Netherlands and the Dutch Baseball Champion in Japan. As a result of the outreach of KSBSB, Dutch people have been getting interested in baseball more and more. On the other hands Japanese baseball has a long history. Probably these two countries will be able to seek the opportunity to exchange our cultural aspects through baseball.

Annual Excursion in July 2014

37 RJC members and their spouses / partners including Judge Owada and Mrs Owada went on the annual excursion to Zeeland on 05 July 2014. Unfortunately a cold drizzle was falling but we had a lot of fun to do. The program was as following;
11:00 Station Capelseburg, leave for Zeeland by chartered bus
12:00 Lunch and Zeeland’s wine tasting at Winehoeve De Kline Schorre
15:00 Guided tour at Watersnoodmuseum (Flood Museum)
17:00 Borrel and hapjes (herring) at Mr van der Goot’s second house
18:30 Dinner at ‘t Oliegeultje, enjoyed the Zeeland’s kreeft with the Ambassador
22:30 Good-bye at Station Capelseburg
Considering that we have many members who love dinking on this excursion, RJC offered the program by which they could enjoy drinking whole day. We believe everybody had a ball. Especially the borrel in a garden at Jacob’s house was wonderful under the good weather. We could chat each other at ease. We sincerely thank Mr and Mrs van der Goot for their heart-warming reception to us.
During the dinner our co-chairman Mr Hazu stated that he would leave the Netherlands and RJC as well after this excursion. On behalf of RJC, Mr van der Goot expressed our gratefulness for his great contribution many years. The co-chairman is succeeded by Mr Tatsumi (NYK) while Mr Fujisaki (Fuji Trading) is appointed as a new RJC Board member.

Lunch meeting in May 2014

On 27 May 2014, RJC held the regular lunch meeting with 22 attenders. Co-chairman Mr van der Goot welcomed the new members as usual; Mr Shimizu (Japanese School of Rotterdam), Mr Uchino (IMBV) and Mr Togashi (Nippon Thompson Europe) as well as the two guests; Mr Buis and Ms Inoue. Each new member gave the impressive speech. The Ambassador Mr Tsuji could arrive at 13:00 so that he could enjoy the lunch and the lecture of the guest speaker: Mr Marcel Karres, the founder of Karres Development Advisory. The title of his speech was “Opportunities and considerations for cross border investment and cultural aspects”. He talked about his unique experience at NFIA in Japan as well as Taiwan and Germany, and at Ernst & Young with some lessons from Kyudo (Japanese archery) . He emphasized the importance of the communication when doing business in different countries, and that the principle of Kyudo that the process is regarded as more significant than the result could be applicable to business, too.

140527 KDA RJC

Lunch meeting and AGM in March 2014

On 12 March 2014, RJC held the first lunch meeting and AGM. We had 2 new members; Mr Amano (Shin-Etsu PVC) and Mr Fukuzawa (Niigata Power Systems). At the AGM, Annual Report 2013 and Budget 2014 which Mr Kamphuis had prepared and our Financial Committee had agreed on were approved. The membership fee will be held as EUR 300 per person per year. Annual Excursion has been under discussion and detail was kept secret but would be a wonderful tour. No special issues came out from the 18 attenders.

New Year’s Party 2014

RJC cerebrates the New Year 2014 on Wednesday 08 January. First we visited Wereldmuseum for the exclusive guide tour for Manga Exhibition. It emphasizes the connection between Japanese religion like Shinto and Buddihism and the modern Japanese Manga. It was an interesting story from Japanese point of view. And then we moved to the members’ restaurant “De Maas”. 32 RJC members and their 13 spouses /partners were welcomed by Co-chairman Mr van der Goot. Ambassador Tsuji also could join the dinner again with us and made short words about his impression of the Netherlands in his first month. During coffee time, Mr van der Goot suggested that all the gentlemen change their seats so that we could enjoy talking with more friends. It was a great idea and the atmosphere got more affable. We spent a good and happy time as the start of 2014.


Joint event with DJRT in December 2013

In addition to our regular activities, RJC had a joint drink party with Dutch-Japanese Round Table (DJRT) on 17 December 2013 in Rotterdam. Mr van der Goot welcomed DJRT members to Rotterdam and made a short speech mentioning the two groups’ similar history and possible cooperation hereafter followed by the gratitude words from DJRT Chairman Mr Kondo. We could enjoy talking each other, exchanging our ideas about business with Japan and the Netherlands. While such an event with another organization is our first experiment, it was a great success.


Lunch meeting in November 2013

RJC has the last lunch meeting of 2013 on Wednesday 20 November. The chairman Mr van der Goot welcomed the 25 attendees and introduced the new members; Mr Frishart (Tsubakimoto), Mr Omori (Okamura Corporation) and the new Ambassador Mr Tsuji with great honour. Ambassador Tusji, who had arrived in the Netherlands 3 days ago from Croatia, referred to the long relationship between the Netherlands and Japan and expressed his expectation of his new role here in the Netherlands. When lunch almost finished, Mr Mishima, the chairman of JCC and MD of Mitsubishi Nederland B.V., started his presentation about the introduction of Mitsubishi Corporation as the top Sogoshosha in Japan and its Renewable Energy business at the forefront. All the attenders had good time with his interesting speech welcoming the new Ambassador.


Lunch Meeting in September 2013

After the summer holidays, we had the 3rd lunch meeting on 26 September 2013 with 24 attenders. Co-chairman Mr van der Goot welcomed all, especially Minister Kikuta (Chargé d’affaires a.i.) and 3 new members; Mr Hayashi from “K” Line, Mr van der Molen from Kneppelhout & Korthals Advocaten and Mr Tatstumi from NYK Line. Before the “Lekker” lunch, Mr Yano, Principle of Japanese School of Rotterdam made an announce of their school festival “Shuka-Sai” on 19 Oct. And Mr Shimizu from Yusen Logsitics had a temporary farewell word to us as he will be trasnferred to Antwerp.
The guest speaker was Ms Fuyuko Tomita, a famous Japanese poet. The title of her talk was “Tao (道) in western culture”. Ms Tomita talked about the Japanese spirit of Tao (道) based on her impressive experiences in comparison with that of western culture. It was a splendid speech appropriate to “autumn of art”.


Annual Excursion in June 2013

Seen off by Mr van der Goot at the Capelseburg station, 27 members with the Ambassador Nagamine and his wife were heading to the Kröller-Müller Museum in De Hoge Veluwe National park while enjoying the lunch box in the exclusive luxury coach. Following the lecture by Mrs Boelrijk, we had a one-hour guided tour in a two groups. Interesting explanations were given not only about van Gogh’s painting but also about the museum’s history. Then we visited Mr Krikke’s beautiful house in Brummen where he and his family welcomed all of us with hapjes and wines. Following the drinking, we did cycling for 5km to the “Hall”. Blessed with the perfect weather, the cycling was a lot of fun! The Hall is a small place, where Cornelis Johannes van Doorn was born. He was a civil engineer, worked with all his best for Koriyama city, Fukushima. There is an objet d’art which we could see the relations between the Hall and Koriyama, the Netherlands and Japan!
Finally we visited a restaurant in Bronckhorst, the smallest town in the Netherlands. After making a “Proost” with Haring and Jenever presented by Mr van der Goot, we enjoyed the dinner and talking each other. The Ambassador gave us a short grateful speech while Mr Ushida and Mr Yoneda did a few words for leaving the Netherlands. We came back to Capelseburg around at 23:00.
Everybody could have a good time whole day especially thanks to Mr Krikke and Mr Bottema who arranged everything. Thank you very much!


Lunch Meeting in May 2013

At the second 2013 lunch meeting, we had 24 attenders welcomed by the Co-chairman Mr van der Goot. It was great honour that the Ambassador Nagamine attend the meeting again. After the introduction of the new member, Mr Hiroshima from Nippon Express, we enjoyed the very suggestive speech by Mr van Aelst, President of Hotel Okura. He explained his various experiences in the Japanese top-class hotel and how to promote himself among Japanese colleagues. All of his episodes could be helpful to make up the gap between the Japanese expats and the Dutch local staff.


Lunch meeting and AGM in March 2013

RJC had the first lunch meeting in 2013 on Wednesday 27 March. The chairman Mr van der Goot opened the meeting with welcome of the 20 attendees. He was also pleased to introduce 4 new members; Mr Parée and Mr Kamikochi (Marsh), Ms Shibata (Embassy of Japan) and Mr Shimizu (Yusen Logistics).
After the pleasant lunch, we had the Annual General Meeting where the Annual report 2012 and Financial Statements 2012 prepared by Mr Kamphuis were both approved. Also the contribution of EUR 3,000 to JSR from our auction at the 25th Anniversary Party was passed. Besides some important things were announced and discussed; Annual excursion to De Hoge Veluwe, Future Lunch meeting with CEO of Eneco, and RJC Promotion to new possible members, especially young people.
It was so meaningful a meeting that we could collect members’ opinions on RJC.

0327 Minutes 27-03-13

New Year’s Party 2013

The first event of RJC in 2013 is of course our New Year’s Party. On Wednesday 16 January 27 members and their spouses /partners (in total of 40 participants) gathered at Lanratern Venster in spite of the cold weather in minus 8 degrees after snowing. Co-chairman Mr J. van der Goot and the Ambassador of Japan Mr Nagamine gave us brief speeches and then we toasted to celebrate our successful new year. After enjoying conversation each other, we watched the Japanese movie “Like Someone in Love”, directed by Iranian director Abbas Kiarostami.


Lunch meeting in November 2012

Our 4th lunch meeting in 2012 was held on Wednesday 14 November. The chairman Mr van der Goot welcomed the 29 attendees and introduced the new members; Mr Krikke (AON), Mr Shimada (Miura Co., Ltd.) and Mr Karras (CONTARGO). Mr van der Goot also formally announced that Mrs Karelse left RJC as a Director but remains as an Honorary Member with gratitude for her 14 years’ contribution.
We were greatly honoured that the new Ambassador Mr Nagamine presented himself at 13:00 past. Ambassador Nagamine deigned a short speech to express his strong decision to enhance the relationship between the Netherlands and Japan. At 13:20 Mr Sugiyama, the chairman of JCC and MD&GM of the Bank of Tokyo-Mitsubishi UFJ (Holland) N.V., made his presentation on “The Lost 20 years – Japan and European Crisis”. With a simple case of Taro-san, Mr Sugiyama showed his analysis by comparison between Japanese and European economic indices shifting their time axes. That was so meaningful and suggestive to everyone that we would believe to find the key to grow again even under such a current critical situation.
The meeting was a quite success with live conversations by many attendees worthy of our last event of this year.


Lunch meeting in September 2012

On Tuesday 11 September RJC had a lunch meeting with our board member, Mr. Bottema, in the chair. Mr. Bottema welcomed two new members, Minister Y.Kikuta, Embassy of Japan and Mr. A. Fenwick, Director of OYC Europe.  While we had fewer participants than usual, the meeting was in a very friendly atmosphere.  After the lunch Mr. Carel baron van Lynden, AKD Advocaat, gave a speech, of which title was “Crisis in the Shipping market”.  It was very interesting for all the participants as most of them have their business related to the shipping industry. Mr. van Lynden explains these 10 years’ situation of  the shipping industry mainly from the financial point of view. The market in these 10 years was considerably up and down whereas the many players had jumped in and has already withdrawn.  Mr. van Lynden concluded, however, that we should not have to be so pessimistic, and that the market will get strong again in the near future. Following the animated questions and answers, the meeting successfully came to an end at 13:55.


Sailing Event Summer 2012

RJC had a sailing in Koudum, Friesland with a traditional barge called “skutsje de Harmonie Bolsward” on Saturday, 30 June as informal activity instead of the annual excursion.

Following the reception by the Master of the skutsje with coffee and the traditional Frisian cake, all of the 14 participants and the clue boarded skutsje. After cosy picnic lunch, we arrived at the pretty village “Woudsend” where we had a walking tour including visiting a windmill “De Jager” and drinks at a local café. Then we sailed back to have delicious “a captain’s dinner”. During 4 hours’ sailing in total, all of us worked as a captain, a helmsman,  a crewman, etc. in turn. It was a hard but unique experience! Blessed by beautiful weather and ideal winds, and thanks to Mr. Bottema’s perfect arrangement, everybody could have an unforgettable sailing day.


The RJC 25th Anniversary Party took place at the Maritime Museum Rotterdam on Friday, 8 June 2012. The theme of the evening was “connected”. After the reception at 18:00, the first main event was the auction of special prizes, artifacts and works of art from our members, of which proceeds will be divided between a Japanese and a Dutch charity. The second was the Prize giving ceremony for the best essays for the 25th Anniversary Memorial Book. It was the memorable party to celebrate our 25th anniversary with wonderful live music by The Art of Swing. Everything was finished at 23:00.


Book Project “Connected”: RJC 25th Anniversary Essay Contest

On the occasion of the 25th Anniversary of the club, the Board of the RJC had invited all the members to participate in the contest. The theme of essays is “Connected”. The jury consisted of independent professionals and read the entries nameless to guarantee impartial judgement. There were the first, second and third price for each Dutch and Japanese entry. From this group of six prize winners, the jury selected “Work Life Balance” as the very best entry, and the author, Mr. Ayumu Nagai, received a Very Special Prize, i.e. the appointment as “Best Author of the RJC” which title he will hold until a next essay writing contest will be held.

All the essays have been bound as a beautiful book with splendid pictures by much efforts of one of our directors, Mr. Van den Berg. The books are distributed to each author. All others can buy the book for euro 17,50. It will also be available for sale through the book stores and on-line and will be included in the Royal Dutch Library. The ISBN is 978-94-91354-12-0.


At the lunchmeeting on Thursday, 10 May 2012, Prof. P.P.S. Ho, Modern East Asia Research Center, University of Leiden, gave a lecture about his Research Center and on “our perceptions of China’s development”.   It was very interesting to hear about different views on China’s development, how the China’s systems work, effects of local elections, similarities of many rights in China and Europe etc.


The lunch / Annual General Meeting was held on Wednesday, 21 March 2012 at our usua venue.  After approval of Annual Report 2011 and Financial Statements, we had an opportunity for discussion regarding the contents of the 25th Anniversary Party on Friday, June 8th. After discussion during our lunch, the spokesman of each table presented many nice suggestions, unique proposals and brilliant  ideas.  it was a very animated and fruitful meeting.


The year opened with the New Year’s Party on Thursday, 19 January 2012 at the Manhattan Hotel Rotterdam, where drinks and bufffet dinner were enjoyed.  Then moved to De Doelen for the nice concert by the Rotterdam Philharmonic Orchestra. It was a very enjoyable and convivial party.


At the lunchmeeting on Thursday, 17 November 2011, Mr. Jan Peter Balkenende, Former Dutch Prime Minister, gave an excellent lecture on his experience with Japan, relationship between Japan and The Netherlands, significance of Japan for the Dutch economy and importance of Europe in the Global economy. All participants at the meeting were very impressed by his presentation and thoroughly enjoyed his speech.  Nothing but positive and enthusiastic feedback was received from our members.


The fall season commenced with a regular lunch meeting on Wednesday, 21 September 2011, 12:00 -14:00 hours at our usual venue.  H.E. Takashi Koezuka, the Ambassador of Japan to the Netherlands, gave an interesting and informative presentation on “Retrospect past one year”.

Special Events: Related to Tsunami

“Rotterdam Helpt Japan” (Rotterdam helps Japan)

On April 8th 2011, the Rotterdam-Japan Club and the Rotterdam Philharmonic Orchestra organised a charity concert for Japan with ensembles of the RPHO and guest performers at the old Luxor Theater in Rotterdam.  Thanks to your warm and generous cooperation, the concert was a big success.  About 450 people attended the concert and it was broadcast by TV Rijnmond.  An article about the concert was published in the AD newspaper of Saturday, April 9.

Immediately after the concert, the proceeds were just above  Euro 10,000.  But it increased steadily until June 6, and finally reached Euro 19,210.

Since the purpose of the action was to help children in the disaster area, a careful search for proper recipients was conducted.  As a result, the Yamada Junior Highschool in Iwate prefecture was selected, which has had close and friendly relations with the Netherlands for more than last 10 years.  About half of all its students and teachers lost either their home or a close family member during the disaster.  This school is very active with extra curricular activities, including sports and music.  The school brass band was invited to play at the Japan Night at the Concertgebouw in Amsterdam in December 2000.  The band has often been invited to play at  town activities.  The citizens of the Yamada town are not only happy to listen to them but the students’ youthful energy has also had a positive influence on the spirit of the Yamada people.  Mr. Sasaki, Principal of the school and other teachers said:  ”Because of the disaster, many students can not afford to buy expensive new music instruments.  Our dream is to give hope back to the students.  Therefore if you could donate instruments, our dream would be realized.”

It was decided to donate music instruments from the proceeds.  We used a local music store to help the local economy and also to maintain music instruments.  As recommended by the school, Ito Music Instrument Store in Morioka City was selected.  With the kind and generous cooperation by Mr. Shuji Ito, the following 8 instruments could be purchased for 19, 210 euro and could be donated to the school:  Piccolo, Flute, 3 Clarinets, bass Clarinet, alto and tenor Saxhorn.

On Friday, July 29, 2011, the presentation ceremony was held at the gymnasium of the Yamada Junior Highschool.  On behalf of the club,  Honorary member Judge H. Owada and his wife, and the director of the club, Mrs. S. Karelse-Asano, attended the ceremony.  It was a heart-warming ceremony:  the school principal explained concisely how the donation was realized since the charity concert in Rotterdam in April;  a leader of the brass band expressed her sincere thanks;  Judge Owada gave a warm and short speech;  and then the brass band played two pieces of  beautiful and harmonious music.

Pictures of the disaster area, the Yamada school, its students, the ceremony and more can be seen in the gallery.