Thank you for your support and understanding for the activities of the Japan Analytical Instruments Manufacturers' Association.
Last year, JAIMA's largest event, the JAIMA EXPO / SIS show, started anew as an international show renamed JASIS, which was sponsored jointly with Japan Scientific Instruments Association, based on the theme "Discover the Future." A variety of measures were implemented to ensure a more international exhibition. For example, the show also included the 3rd US Symposium, which JAIMA sponsored jointly with the US Pittcon committee, the RSC Tokyo International Conference, sponsored by the Royal Society of Chemistry in the UK, the 2nd China (Sino) Forum 2012, sponsored by the China Association for Instrumental Analysis (CAIA), and the Asia Technical Forum, sponsored by JAIMA and Japan's National Institute of Advanced Industrial Science and Technology (AIST). Providing Japanese-English and Japanese-Chinese simultaneous translation helped to significantly increase the popularity of the International Conference Session, China (Sino) Forum, and significantly increased show attendance. Also, receptions that were previously held mid-day and at night, were combined into an international style JASIS Opening Party held in the evening with word-for-word translation. Consequently, attendance increased for the reception as well, to over 600 people from Japan and overseas. This year, for the JASIS 2013 show scheduled from September 4, we plan to implement further measures and invest additional efforts to make this year even more global than last year, with participating manufacturers from around the world and a more comfortable facility for customers. Thank you for your cooperation and support in making this happen.
As you know, Japan recently experienced a major political change. We are hopeful that this new political leadership will lead Japan toward a brighter future, but it will probably take a little more time before the political situation stabilizes and the desired economic, diplomatic, and general political effects are achieved. In fact, economically, the strength of the yen has already begun dropping a little and stock prices have been increasing. Therefore, we hope that this year we can escape our current sense of stagnation, including deflation, but it is unlikely that things will improve very quickly. As manufacturing companies, we need to not only endure the current severe economic conditions, but also steadily regain our strength by solving our immediate problems, one by one.
JAIMA as well is committed to becoming stronger, so that we can help restore Japan back to strength. Finally, I pray 2013 will be a healthy, prosperous, and happy year for all of you.