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Taiwan-Japan Youth Forum promotes friendly exchanges between youth groups

Taiwan-Japan Youth Forum promotes friendly exchanges between youth groups
The 2014 Taiwan-Japan Youth Forum was jointly held by the TECO office in Osaka and the Japan-Taiwan Students Forum Kansai Branch on July 5 and 6 at the Osaka Hagoromo International Youth Exchange Center. Nearly 30 young students from Taiwan and Japan participated. The theme of this year’s forum was "New discoveries across borders". The forum included workshops and group discussions to enhance the participants' understanding of the historical, cultural, and present interactions between Taiwan and Japan, and equally important was a party for everyone to relax together and get to know each other more, and promote friendly exchanges between the two groups of youths.

The forum organizers invited Mr. Yasutsune, the executive director of the Assist Planning Company, which has branches in Taiwan and Japan, to make a speech about "economic exchange and cooperation between Taiwan and Japan." He spoke about ways that the economic structures of Taiwan and Japan are complementary to each other, and how the two countries have been cooperating and mutually developing since the end of the Second World War.

In the group discussions, the participants compared similarities and differences in the history, culture, and the status of the two countries, and expressed their views and experiences. For example, Tokura, a Kansai University student, told the other participants how he had taken a year of leave from his studies and gone and worked at the Taiwan Family Support Center as a volunteer, helping to care for children. In the beginning, he didn't understand any Chinese, but the Family Support Center staff, volunteers, and children too all enthusiastically assisted him. Their kindness and enthusiasm moved him deeply.

Harada Samet, the chief of the Japan-Taiwan Students Forum Kansai Branch, summarized the two days' forum, saying that she was delighted to meet Taiwanese students and Japanese students from other universities who share her love of Taiwan. She was also delighted that they were willing to share their experiences of exchanges with Taiwan. The forum gave everyone, Taiwanese and Japanese alike a better understanding of the status of Taiwan. And two of the Japanese participants have now decided to study in Taiwan, to enjoy Taiwan's culture and friendly people.