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October Document of the Month

Taoiseach Jack Lynch & Máirín Lynch Visit Japan, August 1968

Ireland and Japan, two island nations lying on opposite sides of the globe, have enjoyed excellent relations since the establishment of formal diplomatic ties in 1957. The following decade saw both nations steadily increase economic and trade links from an almost non-existent base. Those links received two significant boosts in 1968. In February of that year the Japanese government appointed Bunshichi Hochi as its first resident ambassador in Dublin. Six months later, Taoiseach Jack Lynch and his wife Máirín arrived in Japan for a formal three-day visit – the first by an Irish head of government. Along with Hochi’s appointment, the visit cemented the growing importance of Japan to Ireland’s economic development. Two years later several Irish state and semi-state bodies participated at the 1970 World’s Fair in Osaka, and by the end of 1973 the Industrial Development Authority and Córas Tráchtála had established a presence in Japan. Perhaps most important was the decision by the Department of Foreign Affairs to open an embassy in Tokyo, with Robin Fogarty appointed as Ireland’s first resident ambassador to Japan in September 1973. Annual delegations of Irish businessmen travelled to Japan in the following years, with the Minister for Industry and Commerce, to seek new business opportunities.

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NAI TAOIS 99/1/575/1

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NAI TAOIS 99/1/575/2

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NAI, TAOIS 99/1/576/1

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NAI, TAOIS 99/1/576/2

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NAI TAOIS 99/1/576/3

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NAI DFA 2014/67/103

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NAI DFA 2014/67/103

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