Members of the Chamber met with the Odawara Hakone Chamber of Commerce & Industry (OCCI) on 4 October. The visit was to build relationship between the two chambers as the Wallabies and Australian Sevens teams will be using Odawara (the Shiroyama rugby ground) as their Japanese training base for the next three years. A group from ANZCCJ, including Chair Andrew Gauci, Chair Emeritus Melanie Brock, Food, Ag and Hospitality Committee Chair Tim Barnstable, Executive Director Judith Hanna, Australian Embassy Public Diplomacy Counsellor Michael Hoy, Murray River Organics’ Joe Gayton, Harnets Corporation’ Frank Hart, Melanie Advisory’s Shoma Kubo, and Club Australia’s Tad Watanabe travelled to Odawara for the meetings.
With key matches and tournaments to be played in Japan in 2018, 2019, and 2020, we met with counterparts from OCCI including Mr Teisuke Suzuki, President of the Odawara and Hakone Chamber of Commerce & Industry, Executive Director Hiroshi Yamaoka, representatives from Yokohama Bank and local company representatives from their own sports for business committee (DACS). We were also pleased to meet with the Deputy Mayor of Odawara Yasuhiko Kabe and the Mayor of Hakone Nobuo Yamaguchi. Andrew Gauci was interviewed by the local news. Our Chamber’s interest in and visit to Odawara was reported by local media. In anticipation of our visit, a group of children with disabilities created a Wallabies banner for us, something we were so touched by that our Chair Emeritus Melanie Brock arranged to have up on display at our ANZCCJ Bledisloe Cup Charity Gala Dinner on 25 October. Read more online about the visit from the Odawara Official Website, Kanaloco, and Town News.