City of London and Tokyo agree closer cooperation

The City of London Corporation has today signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with the Tokyo Metropolitan Government which will result in closer collaboration between the financial and professional services sectors in both cities. The signing ceremony took place at the British Embassy, Tokyo.

Lord Mayor of the City of London, Charles Bowman, signed the MoU via a video conference with the Governor of Tokyo, Yuriko Koike, in Japan this morning.

The four-year agreement will aim to boost cooperation in a number of areas including:

  • FinTech and innovation;

  • asset management;

  • developing international standards in areas like green finance and environmental, social and governance (ESG) investment; and

  • promoting, retaining and growing mutual investment activity in light of Brexit.

The signing of the MoU comes in advance of next year’s visit to Japan by the City of London Lord Mayor Alderman Charles Bowman in May 2018.

Commenting on today’s agreement, the Lord Mayor said:

"I am delighted to sign the Memorandum of Understanding today alongside the Governor of Tokyo.

"Our great cities have a long history of collaboration across many sectors, and I am confident that the signing of the agreement today will lead to even greater cooperation.

"Last year we saw record growth in trade in the field of financial and professional services between the UK and Japan - with UK exports rising by nearly £1.3 billion. This shows the tremendous role the UK already plays in this area, and the amount of knowledge and expertise we have to offer."

The signing was followed by a panel discussion in Tokyo with specialists in the sector from the UK and Japan. A member of the City of London Corporation also took part in the panel.

Read the full text of the Memerandum of Understanding in English.

Media enquiries: Nathan Rodgers, Financial Services – Asia, The City of London Corporation

Tel: 020 7332 3451 / 07864 625 086


Notes to editors

  1. The Corporation's Chairman of Policy and Resources, Catherine McGuinness, sits on the Japanese Market Advisory Group, a high level industry body run by TheCityUK and chaired by Sir David Wright, working to strengthen the trade and investment relationship with Japan in the field of Financial and Professional Services (FPS).

  2. Sir Roger Gifford, Chair of the City of London's Green Finance Initiative and the 2012–13 Lord Mayor of London, also sits on the Tokyo Global Financial City Advisory Council - a body working to revitalise the Japanese capital's financial sector.

  3. The City of London is home to 65 Japanese financial institutions and manages a programme of engagement with Japanese stakeholders in London through our Global Exports and Investment team and Asia Programme.

  4. In 2016 exports to Japan topped £4.6 billion- an increase of nearly £1.3 billion on 2015. In the same period UK imports in FPS from Japan hit £959 million, an increase of £135 million. (ONS)

  5. The City of London Corporation provides local government and policing services for the financial and commercial heart of Britain, the 'Square Mile'. In addition, the City Corporation has three roles:

    • We support London’s communities by working in partnership with neighbouring boroughs on economic regeneration, education and skills. In addition, the City of London Corporation’s charitable funder, City Bridge Trust, makes grants of around £20 million annually to tackle disadvantage across London.

    • We also help look after key London heritage and green spaces including Tower Bridge, the Museum of London, Barbican Arts Centre, City gardens, Hampstead Heath, Epping Forest, Burnham Beeches, and important commons in London.

    • We also support and promote the ‘City’ as a world-leading financial and business hub, with outward and inward business delegations, high-profile civic events and research-driven policies, all reflecting a long-term approach.