Consulate-General held 2nd Jeddah Japanese Speech Contest

On Thursday, October 26, 2023, as part of its continuing efforts to enhance cultural exchange with the Saudi people and promote Japanese culture and language, the Consulate General of Japan in Jeddah held “Japanese Speech Contest” in its second edition, hosted by King Fahd Public Library in Jeddah in coordination with Saudi Association of Japan Graduates & Associates (SAJGA) and Jeddah Japanese Society.
Amid a large presence of those interested in Japanese culture, 13 Japanese language learners participated in the contest, demonstrating great proficiency in speaking the Japanese language in a way that amazed the audience and won their admiration.
Ms. Rahah Matbuli, who won the Japanese Consulate-General Award said in her speech: “I am very happy to see that more and more news about Japan is being reported in the news and that Saudis are now aware of the charms of Japan, which I love. As a Saudi who speaks Japanese in various fields such as industry, commerce and entertainment, and who has studied abroad, I feel that I must do my best to further improve my language skills and introduce the good qualities of Japan for the sake of both countries.”
The speech contest was preceded by a panel discussion among representatives of Japanese residents in Jeddah and Saudi nationals with experience studying in Japan, who exchanged opinions on cultural similarities between Japan and Saudi Arabia.
In the opening ceremony, His Excellency Dr. Abdullah Al-Ahmadi, President of King Fahd Public Library in Jeddah, and Mr. Munir Khoja, the representative from SAJGA respectively hailed the organization of this speech contest against the backdrop of the good bilateral relations between Japan and Saudi Arabia and expressed their gratitude to the Consulate General of Japan in Jeddah.
Mr. Mitsutaka Nishida, Acting Consul-General of Japan in Jeddah, in his part, expressed his gratitude to Dr. Abdullah bin Attiya Allah Al-Ahmadi, CEO of King Fahad Public Library in Jeddah, and all the library employees for their wonderful cooperation in holding this contest. He extended his gratitude and appreciation to Saudi Association of Japan Graduates & Associates (SAJGA), as well as to the Japanese Community in Jeddah, the Japanese School in Jeddah, Eng. Munir Khoja, representative of SAJGA, Mr. Saito, President of the Japanese Society in Jeddah and Mr. Shintani, Principal of Japanese School in Jeddah.
He also recalled the statements of H.E. Ms. Yoko Kamikawa, Japanese Minister for Foreign Affairs, during the Peace Summit recently held in Cairo: “let us share our grand vision to pursue the world in harmony, not division or confrontation.” “Let us put together our capacity and wisdom to make sure that people in the region can enjoy sustainable peace and security." And he said that he is encouraged by the 13 participants at today’s contest, saying that achieving the goal of “the world in harmony, not division or confrontation” as in Minister Kamikawa’s speech can only be achieved through learning about the cultures and traditions of others, and this is what we emphasize and encourage.”
He concluded his speech by expressing his great hope that today's competition will be an opportunity for all participants to improve their Japanese language and a gate for broader prospects of cooperation between the Consulate General of Japan in Jeddah and King Fahad Public Library.

--Press Coverage--
Arab News "Japanese speech contest strengthens cultural exchange between Japan and Saudi Arabia
" dated October 27