Inaugural Hawaii-Japan Sister State and Sister City Summit Coming to Honolulu, Hawaii July 27-28, 2023

Posted on Jun 19, 2023 in News

For Immediate Release: June 19, 2023

HONOLULU—The State of Hawaii Department of Business, Economic Development and Tourism (DBEDT) in partnership with the Japan-America Society of Hawaii (JASH), is convening the first Hawaii-Japan Sister State and Sister City Summit on July 27 and 28, 2023, at the Hilton Hawaiian Village in Honolulu, Hawaii. Governor Josh Green, M.D. and Hawaii’s mayors will welcome governors and mayors of the six prefectures and sixteen cities and towns from Japan with sister relationships.

“Hawaii and Japan have a long narrative of cultural, social, economic, and historical ties,” said Governor Green. “Our shared experiences have made us not only the closest of friends but partners in many respects. This summit brings us together to celebrate our relationships, while focusing more on what we can do together in the future.”

“The summit will invigorate the sister relationships between Hawaii and Japan. Sister relationships can and should play a significant and strategic role in maximizing economic, cultural, and educational opportunities,” said DBEDT Director James Kunane Tokioka.

Corporate sponsors as well as general attendees from the public are welcome to register to be part of this momentous event.

With the theme “The Ties that Bind,” the summit seeks to refresh and strengthen ties that were paused by the COVID-19 pandemic. It provides a venue for Hawaii and Japan to explore common issues which will serve as starting points for future exchanges. Leaders from Hawaii and Japan in the fields of sustainable energy, business and economic development, sustainable tourism, and education, will discuss the latest developments and possibilities for future collaboration. The summit will also feature a marketplace with up to 35 booths displaying products, services and cultural highlights from both Japan and Hawaii.

Senior government officials and key business, cultural, educational, and civic leaders from Hawaii and Japan are encouraged to attend. Delegates will connect, strengthen relationships, and create new initiatives to boost trade, direct investment, collaboration, and goodwill between Hawaii and Japan.

For more information, please visit the summit website at:

About the Department of Business, Economic Development and Tourism (DBEDT)
DBEDT is Hawaii’s resource center for economic and statistical data, business development opportunities, energy and conservation information, and foreign trade advantages. DBEDT’s mission is to achieve a Hawaii economy that embraces innovation and is globally competitive, dynamic and productive, providing opportunities for all Hawaii’s citizens. Through its attached agencies, the department fosters planned community development, creates affordable workforce housing units in high-quality living environments, and promotes innovation-sector job growth.

About the Business Development and Support Division (BDSD)
The Business Development and Support Division of DBEDT promotes industry development and economic diversification by supporting existing and emerging industries in Hawaii and by attracting new investment and businesses to the state. Learn more at:

About the Japan America Society of Hawaii (JASH)
JASH is one of Hawaii’s oldest and most established organizations which fosters economic, educational and cultural activities between Hawaii and Japan. JASH is a member of the National Association of Japan-America Societies, consisting of 38 independent Japan-America societies located around the United States and Canada. JASH is uniquely positioned to serve as the statewide convener to coordinate activities for Japan-Hawaii economic reopening, recovery and resiliency planning activities.

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Laci Goshi
Department of Business, Economic Development & Tourism
(808) 587-9006

Dennis Ling
Business Development & Support Division Administrator
Department of Business, Economic Development and Tourism

Reyna Kaneko
Japan-America Society of Hawaii
(808) 524-4450

Sheri Kajiwara
Summit Coordinator
(808) 265-1051