Hiroba Newsletter



 *Hiroba is the Japanese word meaning an open space or public square 

March 2010 Edition

Website of the Consulate-General of Japan, Perth WA : http://www.perth.au.emb-japan.go.jp/

White Day 

Valentine's Day in Japan is a day when women give chocolate to men as a sign of their affection. In return, March 14th is the day when men give gifts to women from whom they received a Valentine's Day gift. This day is known as White Day and the gifts presented to women are expected to be more expensive than Valentine's Day gifts. There is a Japanese saying used on White Day, sanbai gaeshi,  which describes the fact that return gifts should be triple the price of the gift received. Typical White Day presents include marshmallows, cookies, white chocolate,  flowers and jewellery.

The celebration of White Day began in Japan in 1978 when the National Confectionery Industry Association came up with the idea as a way of paying back the women who gave chocolate to men on Valentine's Day. The company marketed marshmallows as gifts for this day and as a result, the day was originally known as Marshmallow Day. Its current name, White Day, comes from the colour of the marshmallows initially presented on the day. White Day is also recognised in South Korea and Taiwan.


Upcoming Events

Traditional Japanese "Sit-down" Comedy Show (Rakugo)

A traditional Japanese ‘sit-down’ comedy performance in English will be held at the State Library of Western Australia. Known as rakugo in Japanese, this performance of traditional comic storytelling is part of the Japan Foundation's travelling cultural performance series. The performance will take place on two evenings in March, details as follows:

Venue: State Library Theatre, Perth Cultural Centre, Northbridge (entry via Francis Street)

Dates: 22 & 23 March 2010

Commencement Time: 6:30pm (doors open 30 minutes prior to commencement)

Admission: Free (first-come-first-served basis - limit of 1 ticket per person will be distributed from 6:00pm at the entrance to the theatre on the night of the performance)

The performer for these two shows will be Asakichi Katsura (pictured below), who first performed Rakugo in English in 2000 and has since appeared all over the world in countries such as the USA and Singapore. Katsura won the prestigious NHK Comedy Performance award in 2001 and is skilled at playing the Japanese flute.



Consulate-General News 

Consul-General Sato's Speech at the Rotary Club of Perth

On 19th February 2010, Consul-General Sato delivered a speech as guest of honour at a luncheon given by the Rotary Club of Perth. He discussed the Japanese manufacturing industry with special emphasis on monozukuri


Japanese Foreign Minister's Visit to Perth 

Japan's Minister for Foreign Affairs, Mr. Katsuya Okada visited Perth on 20th and 21st March 2010. A bilateral meeting with Australia's Minister for Foreign Affairs the Hon Stephen Smith was held while Mr. Okada was in Perth. The Perth visit was part of Foreign Minister Okada's visit to Australia. Mr Nakasone visited Perth as the then Foreign Minister in May 2009.


Foreign Ministers of Australia and Japan respectively, the Hon Stephen Smith and Mr. Katsuya Okada


JET Programme Returnees' Reception

On Thursday the 25th of February, Consul- General Torao Sato joined Mr Bill Marmion MLA, the Deputy Director of CLAIR, Sydney, Mr Sugimoto, as well as many Perth locals in welcoming back the JET returnees of 2009 at the residence of the Consul-General.

Speeches were given by Consul-General Sato and Mr Bill Marmion, before the toast was delivered by Mr Sugimoto. Finally, the "show and tell" section of the evening allowed the seven JET returnees to share their experiences of working on the JET Programme in Japan with those gathered at the reception.

JET Returnees with JET Alumni Association president, Mr Nick John (centre) and secretary Mr Dave Millin (top right)


Bunbury Multicultural Night Under the Stars

On the evening of Saturday 27th February, the Bunbury Multicultural Group hosted a Multicultural Night Under the Stars at the Graeme Bricknell Memorial Music Shell in Bunbury, two hours south of Perth by car.

This annual event showcased a wide variety of cultures from around the world via performances, food and information stalls. 

The Consulate-General of Japan at Perth had an information stall which aimed to introduce Japan and its culture. Brochures on the JET Programme introducing the Japanese government's Japan Exchange and Teaching Programme and Nippon magazines introducing Japanese culture were available, while traditional Japanese toys were displayed at the stall. 

Japan Brief

NB - Japan Brief is an original production of the Foreign Press Center, Japan ,and does not represent the views of the Government of Japan or that of any other body.

Curtain Falls on Vancouver Winter Olympics

GDP Grows by 4.6% Annual Rate in October-December 2009 Quarter

Government Decides to Dispatch SDF Units to PKO Mission in Haiti to Assist Reconstruction Work

JAL Files for Bankruptcy Proceedings to Restructure Itself

Office Information  

Please note the Consulate-General will be closed on the following days:

Friday April 2: Good Friday

Monday April 5: Easter Monday

Opening Hours

Monday - Friday
General Enquiries: 9:00am - 1:00pm
2:00pm - 5:00pm
Visa Enquiries: 9:00am - 12:30pm
2:00pm - 4:00pm

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