Catalonia working to make Barcelona-Tokyo direct flight a reality

Minister of Foreign Affairs predicts that relations with Japan will take "definitive step forward" in 2024

Foreign minister Meritxell Serret visits the Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA)
Foreign minister Meritxell Serret visits the Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA) / Ministry of Foreign Affairs
Catalan News

Catalan News | @catalannews | Barcelona

December 4, 2023 06:40 PM

The Catalan government is working to make a direct flight between Barcelona and Tokyo a reality, foreign affairs minister Meritxell Serret said on the last day of her official trip to Japan.  

"We want it to be a reality," Serret said after a meeting with representatives of Japan's foreign ministry, "while we also are strengthening contacts in the fields of business, research, tourism and culture." 

During the meeting, Serret also explained to the Japanese representatives the priorities of the forthcoming Catalan government delegation in Japan, and the agreement that outlines relations between the two governments, the so-called Japan Plan

Links with Japan will take a "definitive step forward" next year, she said. 

Serret, accompanied by the government's delegate to Japan, Mònica Castellà, also met with parliamentarians from various parties in the Japanese parliament, speaking about the current political situation in Catalonia. 

Serret and Castellà also met with the ambassador of the European Union to Japan, Jean-Eric Paquet, discussing collaboration on issues such as green hydrogen, semiconductors and exchanges between university students.  

The foreign affairs minister also met with representatives of the Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA) to "explore all possibilities of cooperation," and they inaugurated Catalan Week in Japan, with importers of Catalan food and drink produce. 

Sagrada Família exhibition 

Among Serret's other engagements on her trip to Japan was a visit to the 'Gaudí and the Sagrada Família' exhibition at the Sagawa Art Museum in Moriyama. 

La consellera d'Acció Exterior, Meritxell Serret i la delegada del Govern al país nipó, Mònica Castellà, en una visita a l'exposició ‘Gaudí i la Sagrada Família’ al Museu d’Art Sagawa de Moriyama.
Foreign minister Meritxell Serret with Catalonia's delegate in Japan, Mònica Castellà

Organized by the Sagrada Família and Japanese public broadcast NHK, the exhibition premiered at Japan's National Museum of Modern Art in Tokyo (MOMAT). 

It has been a great success with the public, becoming the sixth most visited exhibition in the history of the museum, with almost 300,000 visitors.