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Japan’s Prime Minister Thanks San Francisco for Hosting APEC

Written by Han LiPublished Nov. 17, 2023 • 8:00pm
Japan's Prime Minister Fumio Kishida (L) delivers remarks on stage.
Japan’s Prime Minister Fumio Kishida delivers remarks at the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation summit in San Francisco on Thursday. | Source: Brendan Smialowski/AFP via Getty Images

San Francisco just got a thumbs-up from Japan.

On the final day of the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation summit, the city’s biggest international event in eight decades, Japan’s Prime Minister Fumio Kishida expressed his gratitude for the city’s warm hospitality during the summit.

“My stay in San Francisco is worthwhile,” Kishida said through an interpreter at a press conference, “and impossible to forget.”

Kishida believed San Francisco is the most qualified city to host APEC this year as the city is known for diversity and innovation. He went on to praise the Bay Area’s historic Japanese immigrant community and the economic contributions from hundreds of Japanese businesses in the region. The Japanese government's delegate to APEC this year has about 150 people.

Reporters from The Standard and its media partner ABC7 KGO-TV, as well as two other Japanese-language media outlets, were selected to ask questions of the prime minister at the press event.

A group of people stand at the table at an dinner event
Japan's Prime Minister Fumio Kishida, second to the right, attends a Japanese seafood event with celebrity chef Kyle Connaughton, right, in San Francisco on Thursday. | Source: Courtesy Japan External Trade Organization(San Francisco)

During his short APEC trip, Kishida said the delegate supported multiple local events, including a Japanese seafood promotion event featuring Michelin-starred chef Kyle Connaughton, who owns the famous SingleThread restaurant in Sonoma County.

Kishida, who became Japan’s top leader in 2021, also met with multiple world leaders for bilateral talks during APEC, including President Joe Biden, Chinese President Xi Jinping and South Korean President Yoon Suk Yeol.

Before the press conference, Kishida visited Stanford University with Yoon in the early afternoon. He is flying back to Japan on Friday night.

Earlier this week, the San Francisco Chronicle also ran an op-ed written by Kishida, highlighting his excitement for the city, the Bay Area’s long history of Japanese immigration and the country's commitment to U.S. allyship and APEC.

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