Award Ceremony 2006

The Fukuoka Prize 2006 Award ceremony

September 14, 2006 (18:00 - 19:40)
Fukuoka International Congress Center, Main Hall
Agnes Chang

With Ms. Agnes Chan serving as a Master of Ceremony, the Prize Presentation Ceremony for the 17th Fukuoka Asian Culture Prizes 2006 was held in a solemn atmosphere with the attendance of approximately 1,000 people, including His Imperial Highness Prince Akishino, representatives from the embassies, international exchange organizations, business circles and universities, exchange students in Fukuoka, and guests from local organizations as well as the citizens of Fukuoka. 

 In the first part of the ceremony, brief introductions of the laureates’ achievements were made, after which the laureates were welcomed on stage in a big round of applause from the audience.  A greetings from the organizing committee representative, an Imperial address delivered by His Imperial Highness Prince Akishino, and the summary of the screening process were made before the laureates were bestowed their prizes by the organizing committee representatives.  Each of the laureates expresses their joy upon receiving the prizes, their views on Asia, and messages to the citizens of Fukuoka City.  Students at Fukuoka International School presented the laureates with flower bouquets, inviting another generous applause from the floor. 

Students at the Department of Asian Studies, Chikushi Jogakuen University, beautifully dressed in Japanese kimono, escorted the laureates on the stage to add an extra touch to the ceremony  

In the second part, a dialogue between the four laureates and Agnes Chan was made in a friendly atmosphere.  Then, representing the citizens of Fukuoka, one of the students at the Faculty of Humanities, Fukuoka University offered his congratulations to the laureates.  The ceremony came to an impressive conclusion when Agnes Chan sang the song “Flower of Happiness” together with the audience.

Address by Prince Akishino

It is a great pleasure for me to join you at the Prize Presentation Ceremony of the 17th Fukuoka Asian Culture Prizes 2006.

Today, many countries and regions in Asia have achieved their economic growth, and Asia now has earned a reputation as one of the most vibrant areas in the world.  The diversified cultures of Asia, on the other hand, are influenced by the swift advance of development in the name of globalization, forcing the cultures in each country under pressure to become uniform at times.  At the same time, however, we notice that the great efforts have also been made for the maintenance and preservation of traditional culture as well as for the establishment of new cultures.  Personally, I have visited various parts of Asia on a number of occasions.  I have been impressed by the depth and richness of the indigenous cultures, yet duly surprised by the drastic changes on many occasions.

In this age of change, I believe that the Fukuoka Asian Culture Prizes which honors those who have contributed greatly to the preservation and creation of ever-thriving cultures of Asia is very significant and would like to offer my sincerest congratulations to the four laureates of the Grand Prize, the Academic Prize, and the Arts and Culture Prizes.  I am confident that what you have achieved will not only contribute to the enrichment of the culture of your own countries, but also illustrate the depth of Asian cultures, enrich the culture of the whole human society, and transmit the valuable information to the whole world.

In closing my message, I would like to wish the laureates the best of luck and prosperity with their future endeavors, and express my sincere respect for the many persons involved in staging today’s program.  I fervidly hope that the Fukuoka Asian Culture Prizes will endorse a better understanding of Asia amongst the people of the world and further cultivation of peace and amity in the global society.

Acceptance Speech by MO Yan (Grand Prize)

It is such an honor for me to receive the 17th Fukuoka Asian Culture Prizes 2006. 

The Fukuoka Asian Culture Prizes have held the attention of the cultural and artistic circles of Asia ever since they were established in 1990, by first awarding renowned artists, Ba Jin and Kurosawa Akira.  Since then, the Prizes have been recognized more and more as the impressive list of recipients grew, including first-rate researchers and artists all of whom have made significant achievements to the preservation and creation of Asian unique and diversified cultures.  Fukuoka City, the creator of these significant Prizes, also emits a brilliant, akin to a luminous pearl. 

I have never correlated myself with receiving this prize.  Because, comparing to the past excellent laureates, I am just the writer who has seriously devoted his life to writing.  What I have achieved is nothing great at all.  Therefore, when I heard that I would receive the prize, I felt honored but also a little embarrassment. 

Indigenous yet diversified culture of Asia comprises an integral part of the world culture.  It is an asset shared by all mankind.  It is thus the sacred responsibility for those committed to the culture and arts in Asia to succeed, preserve, develop, and newly create the culture into the future.  I, too, interpret receiving of this prize as an encouragement to myself and am determined to make contributions in my own way with courage and faithfulness. 

Before closing, I would like to extend my sincerest respect and appreciation to the organizer of the prize, the City of Fukuoka, and the citizens of Fukuoka who have supported this event, about 4,000 nominators in 54 countries and regions around the world, and members of the screening and selection committees of the Fukuoka Asian Culture Prizes.  I would like to receive this honor in a respectful and humble manner. 

Thank you very much.

Acceptance Speech by Shagdaryn BIRA (Academic Prize)

I cannot find the words to express my deepest gratitude to the Fukuoka Asian Culture Prizes Committee and the Yokatopia Foundation for awarding me their prestigious prize. I am so pleased and honored to be the second Mongol to get the prize after the famous singer Norovbanzad, and the first to win the Academic prize from Mongolia. This Academic prize is a great honour not only for  me, but it is an honour for my country and its scholarship. It gives me great inspiration and energy, and it makes me much younger and more enthusiastic. There is a Mongolian saying that runs: while living, one can drink water from a golden cup.

I am extremely happy that I succeeded in living up to witness the arrival of a new era in the relations of Mongolia with other countries in general and with Japan in particular.

After the invasions of  Khubilai khan to the southern parts of Japanese islands in the end of the 13th century, the contacts of the two countries had not actually been improved for centuries, until our present days. And the contemporary generation of our two countries could be proud for constructing a strong friendship bridge between our two countries across seas and mountains.

It is the genuine humanistic culture that can save humankind from malignant consequences of crude materialism and technocratism. Culture is the best instrument that makes peoples closer and friendly. But it cannot realize its mission, unless the equal level of development of countries, developed and underdeveloped, big and small, is provided and varieties of cultures are guaranteed in the period of globalization. The great gap between developed and underdeveloped countries, specially Asian countries, should be abolished as soon as possible. There is an inspiring experience of Asian “Tigers”.

Mongolia and Japan as Asian countries share many common values and similarities in their traditional cultures and ways of thinking.  Both of our people acquire knowledge of their pre-historical roots from two great books - “The Secret History of the Mongols” and the “Nihongi” of the Japanese. They derive their origin from legendary foremothers - Alan-goa in the case of the Mongols, and Amaterasu for the Japanese.

In the “Tsagan Teüke” and the “Jushichi-jo no Kempo” there had been formulated one and the same philosophy of imperial rulership, that’s the “two orders” of a Buddhist monarchy. In general Buddhism which globalized the whole of Asia in its own time made the Japanese and the Mongols “brothers in Dharma”.

Finally, on behalf of my wife and my children and on my own behalf I take this opportunity to thank His Excellency the Mayor of Fukuoka, the Chairman of Yokatopia Foundation and the Committee members of the Fukuoka Asian Culture Prizes and the citizens of Fukuoka for the excellent arrangement of this marvelous award presentation ceremony.

Ih bayarlalaa. Thank you

Acceptance Speech by HAMASHITA Takeshi (Academic Prize)

It is my great honor to be given this prestigious Fukuoka Asian Culture Prizes.

Sometime ago in Fukuoka, I participated in a symposium commemorating the 100th year anniversary of the opening of Hakata Port.  In the symposium, I learned about the history of port activities by Hakata merchants and their extensive networking of contact lasting up until now, which left a strong impression on me.  Also, a professor of Korea Maritime University in Busan referred to Hakata Port, being a part of the history of Fukuoka, and Busan Port, thriving together by complementing each other across the sea.  He examined why the two ports were created and what differences lay in their backgrounds, and the lecture also left a strong impression on me.

I have based Hong Kong as a network center of my research, from where I have moved around various places of Asia.  In the course of the study, I focused my attention on the historical view of the sea and maritime areas that was shared by people as a common and symbiotic terrain.  My research of the sea and maritime areas especially sharpened my focus on the role played by the port cities.

In recent years, quite a lot of my work has been done outside Japan, so I was considering leaving this country when this prestigious prize was presented to me.  I take the prize to indicate that I should work harder in Japan and commit my time to creating a network throughout the Asian region, with Fukuoka Kyushu, and Okinawa as the core.

Henceforth, I think that the study on Asia will focus on the maritime cities, as where more than half of the world population resides, and as the centre of migration of people, trade, and demographic and environmental issues.  I believe that the exchanges between the maritime cities will play a significant role in the future.  I am confident that Fukuoka, like the Union of Baltic Cities, will further its role as a key partner in the Union of Coastal Cities in the China Sea rim sphere, covering East China Sea and South China Sea.

With this, I would like to finish by expressing my appreciation to you all for bestowing me this honor. 

Thank you very much.

Acceptance Speech by Uxi MUFTI (Arts and Culture Prize)

In the first instance allow me to express my gratitude to the city of Fukuoka, Yokatopia Foundation and the prize committee for honouring me with the culture prize for the 17th Fukuoka Asian Culture Prizes 2006.

I am a cultural documentalist and have spent most part of my life for the collection, preservation and promotion of traditional culture.  Way back in the year 1972 immediately on completing my higher education I realized the richness, the wisdom and the priceless treasure that was imbibed in the traditional heritage of arts, crafts, music, drama, literature of Asian culture.  As a student of social philosophy I was convinced that the culture was a most effective means of social advancement and a true moralizing influence for a country like Pakistan.  Early in life I resolved to commit myself to the preservation of this invaluable legacy.

Pakistan has long years going back to the times of Buddha of cultural exchanges along the silk route with Japan.  There is one aspect that we share with Fukuoka.  Pakistan is on the cross roads of Asia in the West and Fukuoka is the gateway to Asia in the East.  Fukuoka in the East and Pakistan in the West have played an important role of cultural interaction within Asian region over the centuries.  Today East and West have come together like long parted brothers to share and cherish similar visions and common goals through this prestigeous award ceremony at Fukuoka.

Asia is known for diversity, living traditions full of vitality, colour and culture.  This priceless diversity is the source of creativity, alternate modes of thought, action, arts, dance, music, literature to document, to learn, to be proud of and to cherish.  Also this priceless legacy is there to innovate trends, novel ideas based on tradition that is our perennial source of inspiration.  This precisely is the objective of Fukuoka Asian Prize for Culture.  This prize is recognition of Asian legacy.  Fukuoka in awarding me has in fact recognized the culture legacy of Pakistan, of glorious Asia, its rich tradition and its living cultures.

In conclusion of my speech I would like to thank everyone present here today, on behalf of my family.  I would like to thank you, the Fukuoka Asian Culture Prize Committee and the citizens of this beautiful city Fukuoka.

Celebration Banquet 2006

September 14, 2006 (20:00 - 21:30)
Fukuoka Sunpalace, Palace Room

The honorable laureates and their accompanying persons received a warm welcome from approximately 200 guests.

Representing the organizers, Mr. Kawai Tatsuo, the Chairman of Yokatopia Foundation, delivered his greetings, and H. E. Mr. Kamran Niaz, Ambassador of the Islamic Republic of Pakistan in Japan, served as the toastmaster on behalf of all the distinguished guests.  The banquet proceeded in a friendly atmosphere where laureates and guests enhanced their friendships.  There also was a special performance by ‘Camerton’, one of the most popular boy music band in Mongolia, showcasing their gorgeous voices.

Finally, Mr. Yamasaki Hirotaro, Mayor of Fukuoka City, made a closing address to conclude the successful gathering.

Download the Anuual Report 2006

You can download the annual report 2006 in Adobe PDF to check all the events and programs of the Fukuoka Prize 2006.

Download the Anuual Report 2006

Official program reports

Click to see more 2006 reports.