On Jul 28, Ahmed Alkhunaini, Representative Director of Aramco Asia Japan was invited to Akita University to participate in a symposium titled “Saudi Arabia: Energy, Culture, Environment and more,” attended by an audience of 200 which included graduate and undergraduate students of the University’s Graduate School as well as Faculty of International Resource Sciences, and researchers specialized in the Middle East area studies.
The university is known for its rare focus on resource sciences in Japan due to the fact Akita Prefecture is one of the few regions in Japan blessed with mineral resources. Since the first exploration in 1869, oil has been produced in Akita and even today still active though small in quantity. The University’s tradition of education and research in resource sciences dates back in early 1900s as a mining college stationed in this region.
Alkhunaini delivered a keynote speech on the business partnership between Saudi Arabia and Japan. The topics of his presentation ranged from Saudi Aramco’s business and its close relationship with Japan cultivated over the years, to the rapidly growing Saudi Arabia by introducing the recently announced Saudi Vision 2030.
“Japan is a very important strategic market for Saudi Aramco and we Saudis put high regard to Japan for its cutting-edge technologies, quality of products, culture such as ANIME (Japanese animation), and its people. In fact, the people of Japan are the most treasured. Today, there are more than 500 Saudi students studying in Japan and they will bring back what they gain here to betterment of Saudi Arabia in future,” he said.
The visit this time also included sessions with professors where studies relevant to Saudi Arabia were discussed, and a tour of the University’s historical Mining Museum with a collection of 20,000 geologic specimens and mining industry items.