Mitsui Chemicals Successfully Hosts
The Fifth Catalysis Science Symposium


【Opening Ceremony】

Chairman of the MICS 2011 Organization Committee
President & CEO, Mitsui Chemicals, Inc.
Toshikazu Tanaka

Distinguished speakers, guests, ladies and gentlemen, on behalf of Mitsui Chemicals, I am delighted to welcome you all this morning to the opening of the Fifth Mitsui Chemicals International Symposium on Catalysis Science, or MICS2011.

As you may know, the Mitsui Chemicals International Symposium on Catalysis Science was established in 2003 with the objective of furthering the development of catalysis science, a fundamental technology that is the cornerstone behind the company’s corporate mission which is to “Contribute broadly to society through innovations and the creation of materials while keeping in harmony with the global environment”. Therefore, the fifth symposium has as its main theme, Catalysis Science and Its Contribution to Sustainable Development.

As you are aware, the world has changed dramatically since the world economic crisis of 2008. Economic stagnation, global warming, environmental pollution, and energy, water and food shortages have become world problems. Chemistry and the chemical industry must help solve these crucial issues for all of humanity, and thus one can say that the time of chemistry has come. In this respect, catalysis science is expected to play a key role in the development of technologies that save scarce resources, lower energy consumption, and the creation of environmentally friendly high-performance materials.

It is pertinent to mention that the year 2011 coincides with the 100th anniversary of the Nobel Prize awarded to Madame Marie Curie. It is also the International Year of Chemistry, a worldwide celebration of the achievements of chemistry and its contributions to the well-being of humankind. Events are planned for the whole year to increase the public appreciation of chemistry, to encourage interest in chemistry among young people, and to emphasize that chemistry is a science essential for sustainability. It is against such a backdrop that Mitsui Chemicals is hosting MICS2011.

At this symposium, we are fortunate to welcome 14 world famous scientists, four of whom are Nobel Prize Laureates in Chemistry. I wish to extend a most cordial welcome to:
Professor Yuan T. Lee from Academia Sinica, Taiwan,
Professor Sir John E. Walker from the Medical Research Council in the United Kingdom,
Dr. Akira Suzuki, Emeritus Professor from Hokkaido University, and
Professor Ei-ichi Negishi of Purdue University, U.S.A.

I also cordially welcome:
Professor John E. Bercaw of the California Institute of Technology, U.S.A.,
Professor Mitsuo Sawamoto of Kyoto University,
Professor Ei-ichi Nakamura of the University of Tokyo,
Professor Kazunari Domen of the University of Tokyo,
Professor Craig J. Hawker of the University of California, U.S.A.,
Professor Ken-ichiro Itami of Nagoya University, and
Dr. Haruyuki Makio from Mitsui Chemicals.

This afternoon, we will have the Mitsui Chemicals Catalysis Science Award ceremony and three commemorative lectures by the award winners:
Professor David W. C. MacMillan from Princeton University, U.S.A.,
Dr. Kazuya Yamaguchi from the University of Tokyo, and
Dr. Hideki Yorimitsu from Kyoto University.

I wish to take this opportunity to express my deepest gratitude to all those persons and organizations, in particular, six academic societies as well as five local and regional governments, plus others concerned, who have helped make this symposium possible.

In closing, honored guests, ladies and gentleman, I wish you all, and especially the speakers, every success at this symposium. To all present here, thank you for coming.
I thank you very much for your kind attention.

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