A group of East Bay officials, business leaders and community organizations welcomed the Consuls General of Japan and Korea at a unique event at the Sequoyah Country Club in Oakland on Wednesday, October 24, 2012. The first event of its kind in the East Bay, the reception was hosted by Alameda County Supervisor Keith Carson’s office in conjunction with a host and planning committee that included County Administrator Susan Muranishi, the City of Oakland, the Port of Oakland and representatives from government, business and nonprofit organizations.
The reception, attended by more than 200 people, was designed to formally welcome to the East Bay Consul General Hiroshi Inomata of Japan, Consul General Jeong Gwan Lee of the Republic of Korea, their families and staff. The event highlighted the many economic and cultural connections between Alameda County and Japan and Korea.
“I remember first travelling in Asia back in 1984 when I owned an import-export company,” Supervisor Carson noted in his opening remarks. “Now as Chair of the East Bay Economic Development Alliance, for a number of years I have been engaged in international business exchanges with Japan, Korea and other Asian countries. These exchanges are healthy—we are now an international family, which is reflected in the diversity of the residents living and doing business here in the East Bay.”
More than 400 businesses are located in Alameda County and employ more than 10,000 Alameda County residents. There are a number of businesses that are headquartered in Korea and Japan but employ Alameda County residents.
After guests enjoyed tastings from local wineries, Sherry Hu, former KPIX-CBS 5 Reporter, moderated an insightful conversation with the Consuls General. They discussed trade relations between the United States and the two countries; opportunities for partnership around “green” technology; cultural and economic ties between the Bay Area and Korea and Japan; and Asian language study by youth in the Bay Area.
The event was sponsored by more than 20 East Bay corporations, businesses and community based organizations.