Arab News Japan
An event was held at the UAE National Olympic Committee on June 23 to handover a ceremonial silk scarf as part of the UAE-Japan Friendship Silk Project launched in partnership with Insect Resources Technology Inc.
The silk scarf was made using silk from Japanese endemic silkworm raised by students at Dubai Japanese School, who were present alongside the president of the school Masao Wada.
The event was attended by Sheikh Ahmed bin Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, President of the UAE National Olympic Committee, as well as the Consul-General of Japan in Dubai SEKIGUCHI Noboru.
Speaking to Arab News Japan exclusively, Consul- General SEKIGUCHI outlined how “this ceremony represents long-lasting friendship between Japan and the UAE” and “these school children worked very hard to raise the silkworm, and it is Japanese endemic silkworm so it is not that easy to raise in this very different climate and environment.”
He continued by highlighting how “once or twice they failed to raise those silkworms into the cocoon. However, they kept trying and made an utmost effort, and then finally we were able to have the silk scarf.”
During the ceremony, many participants gave speeches applauding the project and the students, including the Consul- General.
He expressed his heartfelt gratitude for being able to take part in the event, and outlined the importance of this achievement. He also assured that the upcoming Tokyo Olympics will be held safely due to the preventative measures set in place, and reiterated how the Olympics remind us of the value of unity among nations and people.
The silk scarf was then given to the UAE National Olympic Committee by one of the children. After the official handover, the school children were then presented with certificates for their handwork.
CEO of Insect Resources Technology Inc., Norihiro Shimizu, spoke to Arab News Japan about the project, sharing how he began the project to combat the decline in the silk industry by informing the public about Japanese silk.
Shimizu decided to venture abroad to the UAE and contacted Masami Ando, the Managing Director of JETRO Dubai, who advised him to partner with the UAE National Olympic Committee and ultimately resulted in the launch of the project.
“Students here they are grown up and they should be involved in this project,” he said. Shimizu also asserted that the children know how to care for the silkworms, whose cocoons were transported to Japan and resulted in the creation of the scarf that will be worn at the Tokyo Olympics opening ceremony.
Ando was also present and expressed JETRO’s support for the initiative and continued dedication to bilateral relations between the two nations.
In October last year, a certificate was presented at a ceremony in honour of the UAE-Japan Friendship Silk Project, contributing to fortified ties between Japan and the UAE.