On the 50th anniversary of the establishment of diplomatic relations between Malta and Japan, the Malta Chamber of Commerce organised an activity during which a committee was established to facilitate greater commercial activities between the two countries. The activity involved a visiting Japanese delegation.
Since 2010 commercial transactions between the two countries reached €150 million annually with Maltese exports to Japan exceeding imports by €50 million.
Tuna fish is the largest Maltese export to Japan with another 20% consisting of machinery and electronic equipment. From Japan, malta imports vehicles, machinery and mainly household appliances.
Chamber President Anton Borg said that research shows that only 1% of entrepreneurs are involved in commercial transactions with Japan.
Minister for Economic Affairs Chris Cardona said that Malta was probably unknown to Japanese investors and they were therefore not exploiting existing possibilities. He said there was potential that Japanese entrepreneurs could use Malta as a platform to extend negotiations within the EU.
Foreign Affairs Minister Dr George Vella said that diplomatic relations between the two countries were stable and there were plans for the coming years for further negotiations to strengthen relations involving the cultural and educational sectors as well as commercial aspects.