A series of private meetings and public seminars in Kyoto, Nagoya, and Tokyo last week provided opportunities for members of the U.S.-Japan Space Forum to hear from emerging and established players in Japan’s space industry and to share thoughts on U.S.-Japan space cooperation in the Trump-Abe era. In Kyoto, members of the Space Forum met with four of Japan’s most prominent “space entrepreneurs,” leaders of emerging space industry companies iSpace Technologies, Inc., Axel Space, Astroscale, and PD Aerospace — before speaking at a public seminar at Kyoto University. Guest speakers at the March 6 seminar in Kyoto included U.S. Consul General in Osaka Allen Greenberg and Hiroshi Nakanishi (Kyoto University). On March 7, Space Forum members heard perspectives from the Nagoya aerospace community, including representatives of Kawasaki Heavy Industries, MHI Launch Services, and the Institute for Space-Earth Environmental Research at Nagoya University. That day a public seminar at Nagoya University featured guest speakers Stephen Kovacsics (U.S. Consulate General, Nagoya) and Hiroyasu Tajima (Nagoya University). On March 8 the group began their day in Tokyo by exchanging views with academics, journalists and officials focused on security and foreign policy at a roundtable hosted by the Graduate Institute for Policy Studies. Following a lunch conversation with nine members of the Japanese Diet, hosted by Lower House member Keitaro Ohno (pictured above), the group concluded its Japan meeting with a public seminar at the America Center Japan (pictured below), where Space Forum members were joined by the Director General of the National Space Policy Secretariat in the Cabinet Office, Shuzo Takada, and the U.S. Embassy’s NASA Attaché, Chris Blackerby.
This latest gathering of the Forum, it’s fifth, helped the group integrate views from emerging and other space industry experts outside Tokyo into its assessment of opportunities for bilateral and multilateral space-related activities. Primary sponsorship for the U.S.-Japan Space Forum is provided by Boeing, IHI Aerospace, Lockheed Martin, Mitsubishi Electric (MELCO), Mitsubishi Heavy Industries, Mitsubishi Corporation, NEC, and Raytheon. The March meetings were also supported by Kyoto University, Nagoya University, J.R. Central, and the U.S. Embassy Japan