Expectations high on new Japan envoy to Beijing, who once served in HK

World | 24 Nov 2020 6:45 pm

The new Japanese Ambassador to China, Hideo Tarumi, who is among the "China School" diplomats at Japanese Ministry of Foreign Affairs, will enter the country this week via eastern Qingdao before receiving two-week quarantine in Beijing amid the epidemic, state media the Global Times said it has learned. 

He had previously served in Hong Kong.
Tarumi will enter China through the coastal city and then be in quarantine for two weeks in Beijing in the ambassador's residence. 
Direct flights between Tokyo and Beijing are still suspended. Japan has five consulates general in China - in Shanghai, Guangzhou, Shenyang, Chongqing and Qingdao. 
Flights between Tokyo and Shenyang have not resumed yet. Those from Tokyo to Shanghai, Guangzhou and Chongqing all have to transfer in Qingdao, making the city the only option for the new ambassador to enter China. 
According to the Chinese Embassy in Japan, passengers have to take a nucleic acid test at centers designated by the embassy two days before the flights. They can only board planes with a paper health certificate issued by these centers. 
According to the source, Tarumi first has to take a nucleic acid test in Japan and a second test in Qingdao before being allowed to enter China.
Tarumi will present his credentials to the Foreign Ministry after quarantine and, according to usual practice, hold a press conference after he officially assumes office.
Tarumi comes from the Chinese language training program under Japanese Ministry of Foreign Affairs known as "China School,'' just like his predecessor Yutaka Yokoi. 
Both Chinese and Japanese diplomats, told the Global Times that Tarumi is considered a leading "China school" expert in the Japanese foreign ministry. The diplomat is very familiar with affairs related to the Chinese mainland, Hong Kong and Macau, and Taiwan. 
His appointment as the new Japanese ambassador meets general expectations, and he is also very competent, some experts and diplomats noted, saying China-Japanese relations are expected to reach a higher level under his tenure. 
Tarumi is quite an active figure who has had contacts with many Chinese scholars and media on various occasions, and has a reputation for being shrewd and capable, the Global Times learned. 
Born in Osaka in May 1961, the 59-year-old studied in Nanjing University in 1986, can speak very fluent Chinese and has abundant experience in dealing with China. 
His appointment as ambassador marks Tarumi's fourth time working in Beijing. He previously worked for the embassy for the first time in 1989 as a secondary secretary. In 1995 he was appointed as the first secretary in the embassy, and in 2011 Tarumi worked in Beijing for the third time as an envoy of government affairs for the Japanese embassy. 
Besides his previous working experience in Beijing's embassy, he also served as a consul of the Japanese Consulate in Hong Kong and general affairs director at the Taiwan office of the Japan-Taiwan Exchange Association.

He was a senior offiical at the Japanese Ministry of Foreign Affairs before being appointed as the new ambassador to China.


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