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Uniting Cultures and Business: The Colombo Japanese Chamber's Annual New Year's Eve Event, an Invitation for Business Integration and Networking


As 2023 comes to a close, we reflect and celebrate another year full of achievements and significant moments. At this time, the emotions of nostalgia arise, as we look at what we have achieved and anticipate the achievements of the future. And among the traditions that mark this cycle's closing, the long-awaited New Year's Eve event of the Colombo-Japanese Chamber of Commerce and Industry stands out, a unique occasion that fuses business integration with the season's magic.

By: Leslie Benítez, International Business Assistant-CCJCI


November 24 marked the closing of this year with the last major event of the Colombo Japanese Chamber of Industry and Commerce (CCJCI) in 2023. To conclude its annual activities and take stock of the achievements achieved, as well as offer a preview of what awaits the future, the CCJCI extended a warm invitation to all its members.


The event was held at the Atrio Building facilities, at the invitation of the affiliated company Grupo A, who, as owners of this emblematic space, generously provided their facilities for the meeting. Their commitment as affiliates of the Colombo Japanese Chamber of Industry and Commerce (CCJCI) and owners of the Atrium Building, added a special touch to the evening, highlighting the collaboration and mutual support within this distinguished business community. Located in the heart of the city and on the 32nd floor of the building, we were able to see a wonderful 360° panoramic view of Bogotá.

The event was inaugurated with the words of the President of the Board of Directors of the Chamber, Mr. Yasuhiro Hirabayashi, continuing with the intervention of Vice President Esteban Ordoñez, and concluding with the intervention of Dr. Ernesto Guerra, who acted as host of the space provided in the Atrio Towers.


The first activity of the event was the Business Perspectives panel: Female Voices in Japanese Companies in Colombia, where there was the opportunity to listen to the perspectives of the Directors and Managers of Japanese companies with a presence in Colombia. The person in charge of leading this panel was Rosa Cárdenas, advisor to the Diplomatic Mission of Japan in Colombia; and the guests invited to this panel were Ninfer Betancourt, General Manager of Colombo-Japanese Education; Angela López, President of Mazda Colombia; Adriana Méndez General Manager of Takeda Colombia; Alessa Costa, General Manager of Astellas Colombia.


Where, from their work and personal experiences, they shared with us their perspectives about the most significant challenges they have gone through in their professional careers and how they managed to overcome them to continue moving forward. Strategies related to the implementation of emerging technologies, the agility of operations in Colombia and their connection with the headquarters in Japan were also discussed. Additionally, they delved into the management of multicultural teams, addressing particular situations that demand a specific approach to promote collaboration and understanding between members of diverse cultures. These interactions offered valuable insight into the strategies adopted to address present and future challenges in the ever-changing business landscape.


Once this activity was finished, it was given way to the interventions of the affiliates who stood out in their annual activities in favor of the environment and social development. With the interventions of ColomboJapanese Education, Komatsu and Hitachi, attendees were able to learn about the projects that these companies generate in different parts of the country, and bringing the name of Japan to these regions.


And likewise, an educational day was held where, through a random selection of numbers, a group of winners were selected from a series of gifts brought directly from Japan, including traditional daruma dolls, kokeshi, and images alluding to the Buddha from Kamakura, among other souvenirs.


After the conclusion of this segment, we proceeded to lunch, during which the His Excellency Ambassador of Japan in Colombia, H.E. Takasugi Masahiro gave a speech in which he commemorated another year of work collaboration. The Ambassador extended his congratulations to the Chamber for his outstanding activities and expressed his satisfaction with the recent signing of the Memorandum of Cooperation between both nations. This agreement lays the foundations for the continuation of collaboration in various strategic projects and sectors.


Thus ending the event, thanking its guests for their attendance and leaving the doors open for a 2024 full of more activities and projects where Colombia and Japan continue to strengthen their ties of friendship.


On behalf of the Colombian Japanese Chamber of Commerce and Industry Team we wish you a Merry Christmas and a prosperous year 2024. 明けましておめでとう.







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