The 11th Japanese delegation to Australia under the Australia-Japan Young Political Leaders Exchange visited Brisbane, Canberra and Sydney on August 6–13, 2006. In order to expand their understanding of each other’s nations, the Japanese delegation, led by Fumio Kishida, member of the House of Representatives from the Liberal Democratic Party, traveled first to Sydney and then to the capital, Canberra, to discuss international cooperation on common challenges and current trends in Australian policymaking and civil society. In Sydney they met with members of the New South Wales legislature in addition to business and civil society leaders.
The delegation met with a wide range of political and governmental leaders, including key figures in the Howard Cabinet and the prime minister’s office. This included Deputy Prime Minister Mark Vaile, Foreign Minister Alexander Downer, Fisheries Minister Eric Abetz, and Gary Nairn, special minister of state. The Diet group also held a series of meetings with national legislators, beginning with the heads of both the upper and lower houses, Speaker David Hawker, and Senate President Paul Calvert, and including Senator Alan Ferguson, the chairman of the Joint Standing Committee on Foreign Affairs, Defence and Trade.
The delegation members also met with a wide range of foreign policy experts, business executives, NGO leaders, and local politicians. Prior to departing the capital, the delegation traveled to the Australian National University (ANU) to take part in a roundtable discussion with researchers at the Australia-Japan Research Center (AJRC). In Sydney they met with members of the New South Wales legislature in addition to business and civil society leaders. Capping off their visit in Brisbane, they met with representatives of the Royal National Agricultural and Industrial Association of Queensland (RNA), and spoke with local legislators about agriculture and industry in the region, a vital issue in trade relations between the two countries.
Liberal Democratic Party (LDP)
FUMIO KISHIDA [Delegation Leader], House of Representatives
TOSHIAKI ENDO, House of Representatives
JUN MATSUMOTO, House of Representatives
Democratic Party of Japan (DPJ)
GOSHI HOSONO, House of Representatives
Independent Party of Japan
SHINPEI MATSUSHITA, House of Councillors
Komeito Party of Japan
YUJI SAWA, House of Councillors