Japan’s Emperor Akihito and Empress Michiko have attended a welcome banquet in the Vietnamese capital, Hanoi.
The banquet, hosted by President Tran Dai Quang and his wife, took place at the presidential office on Wednesday.
The president gave an opening address, saying he is convinced that the visit of the Emperor and Empress to his country will lead to a new age of bilateral friendly and cooperative relations.
The Emperor said in his speech that he has been informed of a growing interest in Vietnam to study the Japanese language, and some elementary schools in the country have classes in that subject.
The Emperor also said that exchanges between the peoples of the 2 countries have been expanding and that a sense of familiarity with each other’s culture has been increasing.
He added that many Japanese companies are also developing an interest in operating in Vietnam.
The Emperor noted he deeply hopes that their visit to the country will help to promote understanding between the peoples of the 2 countries, and assist in further strengthening their bonds of friendship.
On Thursday, the Emperor and Empress will meet people who have studied in Japan, and those who want to work as nurses and caregivers in Japan.
The Emperor and Empress are scheduled to leave Vietnam for Thailand on Sunday to pay their respects to the late Thai King Bhumibol Adulyadej.