CLA INTERNATIONAL LAW SECTION CELEBRATES RENEWED TIES WITH DAI-ICHI TOKYO BAR ASSOCIATION AND PARTICIPATES IN JOINT SEMINAR ON INTERNATIONAL ARBITRATION
By Charles Kaufman
On May 13, 2019, California Lawyers Association through its International Law Section (ILS) and Dai-Ichi Tokyo Bar Association (DITBA) formally executed a Friendship Agreement in Tokyo, Japan, with a ceremony celebrating the renewal of the organizations’ longstanding relationship and collaboration and a day of events around the theme of international arbitration.
ILS and DITBA have been parties to a Friendship Agreement since 2007, and have conducted lawyer exchanges and joint events and programs in the past. The change in ILS’s organization from The State Bar of California to California Lawyers Association as of January 2018 called for a new agreement with the reconstituted ILS. DITBA, one of three mandatory principal bar associations in Tokyo, took the occasion of the new agreement to deepen ties by hosting a delegation of lawyers from ILS. The DITBA lawyers and the ILS members attended joint meetings with Japan’s Intellectual Property High Court and the officials of Japan’s Ministry of Justice, followed by a joint seminar on international arbitration featuring speakers from both ILS and DITBA.
The ILS delegation was led by Ms. Harumi Hata of Buchalter, past ILS Chair, who greeted the joint session in Japanese and participated in a signing ceremony with Mr. Junya Sato, President of DITBA. Mr. Yoshihiro Takatori, a DITBA member known for his pioneering role in creating arbitration centers in Japan and the head of the Japan practice at Orrick Tokyo Law Offices, and Ms. Yoshie Tsuruta, a DITBA member and a lawyer at Ishizaka Law Office, played a key part in the preparation of the new Friendship Agreement and the arrangement of the day’s events. Takatori-sensei also moderated a panel discussion on international arbitration. "Takatori-sensei has been a dear friend to ILS for many years and has helped nurture the friendship between our two organizations in so many ways," Ms. Hata noted. "He has come to California many times to attend our events, including our annual meetings."