The celebration of the traditional Japanese festival “Tanabata”

Japanese Business Alliance announces New Society 5.0 initiative in Serbia

The celebration of the traditional Japanese Tanabata festival, organized by the Japanese Business Alliance in Serbia (JBAS), was held today at the Museum of Yugoslav History in Belgrade. The event was attended by Jelena Begović, Minister of Science, Technological Development and Innovation, the Ambassador of Japan, H.E. Akira Imamura, Adriana Mesarović, Minister of Economy, and Goran Pekez, President of JBAS.

This year’s celebration of the renowned “Star Festival” was dedicated to the recent visit of the Serbian delegation to Japan and further strengthening the ties between the two countries. Following Japanese tradition, during the official ceremony, all participants wrote their wishes on colourful paper strips (tanzaku) and hung them on a bamboo tree specially planted for this occasion in the courtyard of the Museum of Yugoslavia.

Jelena Begović, the Minister of Science, emphasized the symbolism of this festival: “Tanabata reminds us of the importance of hard work, the value of time, and the joy of reunions and fulfilling wishes. It symbolizes the friendship and cooperation between the Serbian and Japanese people, and the patience and careful building of relationships to achieve great things together. The cooperation between our two countries is based on our mutual desire to continue developing joint activities and projects that are significant for our nations.”

H.E. Akira Imamura also expressed his satisfaction with the progress in bilateral relations and economic cooperation: “I greatly appreciate that JBAS supports the activities of its member companies through expert advice, building business networks, and other activities, which significantly contribute to strengthening economic relations between Japan and Serbia. Following the successful visit of the Serbian economic delegation to Japan, it is expected that this fall a delegation from the Japan External Trade Organization (JETRO) will visit Serbia. This visit will further stimulate Japanese company investments in Serbia and enhance our economic ties.”

Goran Pekez, President of the Japanese Business Alliance in Serbia (JBAS), emphasized that Japan is among the top 10 investor countries in Serbia and that this association of Japanese investors is very proud of this: “We hope that the increased interest of Japanese investors in Serbia is, among other things, a result of our continuous efforts to share our experiences with other Japanese companies. Our joint plan for the future is clear; we want to utilize the great potential of the World Expo 2025 in Osaka and the Belgrade Expo 2027 to promote Serbia as a destination for Japanese company investments.”

The Japanese Business Alliance in Serbia today also presented a new initiative, Society 5.0, aimed at supporting the Serbian economy and institutions in the development and implementation of digital technologies in real-time. This initiative originates from Japan and represents Japan’s vision for the future – integrating digital technologies into every aspect of our lives, such as digitising administrative processes, smart solutions in transport, the energy sector, and the educational system.

About the Tanabata Festival:
According to legend, the deities Orihime and Hikoboshi (represented by the stars Vega and Altair) are lovers separated by the Milky Way and allowed to meet only once a year. During the Tanabata festival, one of the most beautiful in Japan, people write their wishes on tanzaku paper strips and hang them on bamboo branches, believing that their wishes will come true.

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