The Government of Japan has conferred the Grand Cordon of the Order of the Rising Sun to Ambassador Umberto Vattani as part of the celebrations for the 150th anniversary of diplomatic relations between Italy and Japan.
Ambassador Vattani was awarded the Grand Cordon for his long term as Secretary General of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, participating in numerous high-level meetings with Japanese Authorities, and for the several years in which he served as the Sherpa of the Italian Prime Minister at G7 summits.
Umberto Vattani is the President of the Italy-Japan Foundation that, as of 2001, has organised the most important cultural events in the two Countries, thereby promoting significant economic initiatives. In his capacity of President of the Venice International University (VIU), Ambassador Vattani was also conferred the decoration for having promoted the VIU and for having incorporated the Waseda University of Tokyo into the VIU, thus creating an Association that is unique in the international academic world, capable of tackling topical global issues, together with other prestigious Universities worldwide.
The insignia awarding ceremony was held on Tuesday in the Imperial Palace, at the presence of Emperor Akihito and of Prime Minister Shinzo Abe.
The Grand Cordon, established by Emperor Meiji of Japan in 1875, was the first national decoration to be directly conferred by the Japanese Government and was also awarded to former Italian Prime Minister, Mario Monti, in 2015.