The former Japanese Group of the Trilateral Commission was widened in 2000 to become the Pacific Asian Group. For the 2009-2012 Triennium, the Pacific Asian Group is composed of over 100 members from Japan, South Korea, Australia, New Zealand, and the five original ASEAN countries (Indonesia, Malaysia, the Philippines, Singapore and Thailand), joined by the People’s Republic of China and India in 2009. Triennium Participants from Taiwan have also participated.
Yotaro Kobayashi, former chairman of the Board of Fuji-Xerox, is the fifth person to serve as chairman of this group since the Trilateral Commission was created in 1973. The first Japanese chairman was Takeshi Watanabe, who took up his Trilateral duties shortly after stepping down as president of the Asian Development Bank. The second was Isamu Yamashita, chairman of Mitsui Shipbuilding and Engineering. He was succeeded by Akio Morita, founder and chairman of the SONY Corporation. Kiichi Miyazawa, former prime minister of Japan and a leading figure in the Trilateral Commission from its beginning, became acting Japanese chairman in late 1993. He passed the baton in 1997 to Yotaro Kobayashi, then chairman and CEO of Fuji Xerox Co., Ltd., who served until 2013. He was succeeded by Yasuchika Hasegawa, president and CEO of Takeda Pharmaceutical Company, Ltd., and chairman of the Board of Keizai Doyukai (Japan Association of Corporate Executives).
The Japanese deputy chairman for many years was Nobuhiko Ushiba, former ambassador to the United States and later minister for external economic affairs. He was succeeded by Yoshio Okawara, who had also served as ambassador to the United States. Shijuro Ogata, former deputy governor of the Bank of Japan for international affairs, succeeded Ambassador Okawara, served as deputy chairman until December 2010, and was succeeded in 2011 by Jusuf Wanandi, co-founder and vice chairman, Board of Trustees, Centre for Strategic and International Studies (Indonesia), Jakarta. Han Sung-Joo, former Korean foreign minister, became a deputy chairman of the Pacific Asian Group in 2000. After being appointed ambassador to the United States in 2003, he was succeeded by Kim Kyung-Won, president of the Seoul Forum for International Affairs and former ambassador to the United States and the United Nations. Professor Han, former president of Korea University and current chairman of of the International Policy Studies Institute of Korea (IPSIKOR), returned to the leadership of the Pacific Asian Group when he succeeded Kim Kyung-Won as deputy chairman in 2006. He stepped down in 2012 and was succeeded by Hong SeokHyun, chairman and CEO of Joong Ang Media Network (JMnet), Seoul, and former Korean ambassador to the United States. The group's name was changed from Pacific Asian Group to Asia Pacific Group in 2012.
Tadashi Yamamoto, founder and president of the Japan Center for International Exchange (JCIE), was the director on the Japanese/Pacific Asian side of the Trilateral Commission from its beginning until his death in April 2012. The JCIE staff served as the Trilateral Commission's secretariat among many other tasks. Tributes to Tadashi's many accomplishments have come from around the world, including these from George Berthoin, Henry Kissinger, David Rockefeller, and Hitoshi Tanaka. More about this remarkable leader may be found on the JCIE Website.
Ken Shibusawa, who is Tadashi Yamamoto's successor as president and CEO of JCIE, has been appointed the Commission's Asia Pacific Group director. A noted entrepreneur, finance professional, and author, he has worked throughout his career to link business and nonprofit successors. Visit the JCIE Website to learn more about him as well as JCIE's multiple involvements.
The Asia Pacific Group held their first regional conference in Seoul, Korea in November, 2000. Subsequent regional meetings were held in Hong Kong (2001), Singapore (2002), Tokyo (2003), Bangkok (2004), Beijing (2005), Bali, Indonesia (2006), Singapore (2007), Shanghai (2008), Seoul (2009), Tokyo (2010), and Bali (2011). The 2012 regional meeting was held in Hong Kong.
Click here to download the Asia Pacific Membership List.