Ambassador Dr. Michael Reiterer visited Setsunan University
April 10, 2019
On 15 March, M. Reiterer, Ambassador of the European Union to the Republic of Korea and Adjunct professor for international politics/University of Innsbruck, visited Setsunan University to address the Faculty of Economics in a special seminar.
The title of his lecture was " Connectivity between the EU and Japan: The importance of the recent EU-Japan agreements (EPA, SPA)". He emphasized the following points: the EU and Japan accounted for more than 20% of the world's GDP in 2017; Japan is the sixth largest trading partner of the EU. The world is facing resurge of nationalism and protectionism. Under such circumstances, the EU and Japan have a shared interest to maintain and promote multilateralism, in economics and trade policy as well as in preserving a liberal international order. The Economic Partnership Agreement (EPA) and the Strategic Partnership Agreement (SPA) provide a solid base for strengthening EU-Japan cooperation and global governance. Connectivity, providing not only physical infrastructure but also facilitating people-to-people contacts, has become essential and also stands at the security-economics nexus. Promoting multilateralism and connectivity are central elements of the EU's foreign policy goals for 2019. In sum, only economics and no politics is no longer an option for important international players like Japan and the EU.
Before the lecture, he had a courtesy visit to President Yagi. As Ambassador Reiterer is Austrian by nationality, Prof Yagi referred to Austrian famous Austrian School of Economists, like J. Schumpeter. Prof. Yagi is about to publish a translation of his works in Japanese to which Ambassador Reiterer congratulated him. A Visit to the Faculty of Science and Engineering, where associate professors Ueda and Shiratori introduced their laboratories and research, completed the program. The Ambassador followed their explanations with great interest; associate Prof Shiratori's Geosymbiosis approach appears to be much in line with the EU's holistic approach to policies, like climate change.