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UK expands Japan Youth Mobility Scheme

The UK Foreign Office will be expanding the Youth Mobility Scheme for Japan in the coming year, it has announced.

Foreign ministers from the G7 held a meeting in Tokyo on November 8. Photo: Pexels

The Accord said the parties must continue to “encourage dialogue between” institutions

The deal was announced as foreign secretary James Cleverly met with Japanese officials at the National Museum of Emerging Science and Innovation in Tokyo, ahead of the G7 meeting in the city.

It means that by Spring 2024, there will be 6,000 places available on the scheme each year in place of the previous figure of 1,500.

On LinkedIn, Celtic English Academy CEO Shoko Doherty said the move was “game-changing” for UK ELT and opens doors to “fantastic opportunities”.

“This significant increase… not only [strengthens] cultural exchanges but also [bolsters] the tourism and English language teaching sectors.

“We can’t wait to welcome more Japanese visitors to the UK, showcasing the beauty and diversity of our incredible country,” she said.

The Youth Mobility Scheme is available to Japanese nationals aged 18 to 30 and want to live and work in the UK for up to two years. Japan’s Working Holiday visa scheme allows British nationals to the same in Japan for one year, according to the Japanese embassy.

The official document from Japan’s ministry for foreign affairs said that the body recognises that “the UK-Japan relationship is centred on shared values, culture and personal ties that support mutual understanding”.

“Strong and sustainable links and exchanges between the institutions, people and businesses of both countries will help address common challenges,” the accord said.

The Hiroshima Accord, as the wider partnership is called in the document, describes the countries’ youth as the “future of bilateral relations”.

“We can’t wait to welcome more Japanese visitors to the UK”

Also briefly mentioned was the British Council, which is working with the Japan Foundation to “help young people from both countries acquire skills and mutual understanding”, as well as promote language education and evaluation as well as cultural exchange”.

In promising news for the countries’ higher education sectors, the document also said the parties must continue to “encourage dialogue between” institutions.

“We are working towards further academic progress among students, young researchers, and university faculty in each country, expanding cooperation and improving mobility and encouraging exchange projects between universities,” it added.

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