Ambassador Hiramatsu participated in the opening of the 6th International Buddhist Conclave at the inauguration ceremony, along with Shri Ram Nath Kovind, Hon’ble President of India, Shri K.J. Alphons, Hon’ble Minister for Tourism, Smt. Rashmi Verma, Secretary, Ministry of Tourism, and other dignitaries. (Text of Ambassador Hiramatsu’s remarks at the ceremony is here.)
The inauguration of the conclave, as well as the panel discussion and tourism investor summit, were held in Delhi on 23rd August. As part of the conclave agenda, a site visit and the exhibition of Ajanta Murals in Aurangabad, Maharashtra, on 24th August; a site visit to Bodh Gaya and Nalanda, Bihar, on 25th August; and a site visit to Sarnath, Uttar Pradesh on 26th August, are also scheduled.
The Government of Japan has been contributing towards the preservation of Buddhist heritages in India and their development as tourist destination. Japan has actively supported measures to preserve the Ajanta-Ellora caves, to improve access to the caves by building roads and by upgrading airports, as well as by establishing visitor centers at both Ajanta and Ellora, through Japan’s Official Development Assistance (ODA) loan. The B2B meetings are going to be held at the visitor center in Ajanta on 24th August.