The Minister (s) of Foreign Affairs, Edgardo Riveros, today accompanied the President of the Republic, Michelle Bachelet, at the audience in which she received the Imperial Prince of Japan, Fumihito Akishino and his wife, Princess Kiko Akishino, who are on an Official Visit to Chile to commemorate the diplomatic relations between the two countries, which began on September 25,1897 with the signing of the Treaty of Rome.
After the meeting, the President and the Prince made a statement to the press. In his intervention, the national authority stressed that "since the dawn of the Independence of our country, we have looked at the Pacific Ocean as an element of neighbourliness and we feel part of the community of nations that seeks to forge bonds of friendship and cooperation through this space of convergence".
In that sense, she indicated that "since the middle of the 19th century, Asia has been on Chile's international agenda. Several Chilean consulates and legations were opened in that region. As early as 1860, Japanese ships arrived at Chilean ports. And, in 1890, Chile opened a Consulate in Yokohama".
The Ruler added that "there are profound achievements and gestures of friendship that strengthen this relationship that go beyond the centenary" and explained that since 1990, all the Presidents of the Republic of Chile have visited Japan and that their Imperial Highnesses, the Prince and Princess Hitachi, came in 1997, for the Centenary of the establishment of relations between Chile and Japan.
Prince Fumihito Akishino is the second son of Emperor Akihito of Japan and second in the succession line of the chrysanthemum throne. He holds a PhD in ornithology and specializes in fish taxonomy. He also studied Law, Political Science, and Biology. He is a visiting professor at the Tokyo University of Agriculture; honorary doctorate in six foreign universities and honorary president of WWF (World Wide Fund for Nature) in Japan.
Princess Kiko Akishino holds a PhD in Humanities, a Psychologist and a Master of Arts in Social Psychology from Gakushuin University. She is also Honorary Vice President of the Japanese Red Cross and President of the Anti-Tuberculosis Association of Japan.