The three regions of Shandong (China), Yamaguchi (Japan), and South Gyeongsang (Korea), share a common identity as maritime gateways that connect the three nations.
Prior to the commencement of trilateral exchanges, Shandong and Yamaguchi had concluded a friendship agreement in August 1982, Yamaguchi and South Gyeongsang had concluded a sister agreement in June 1987, and Shandong and South Gyeongsang had concluded a sister/friendship agreement in September 1993.
The year 1997 marked the 15th anniversary of Shandong-Yamaguchi friendship relation and the 10th anniversary of Yamaguchi-South Gyeongsang sister relation, acting as a momentum for the three regions to establish trilateral exchange relationship with the purpose of strengthening existing bilateral cooperative relations. The three have periodically held annual exchange programs and working-level meetings on discussion of agendas for cooperation since 2006. The three local governments have been promoting cooperation and exchange in various areas, including culture, youth, and welfare for senior citizens. Exchanges among universities are active as well.
- Since 2006: Trilateral Working-level Meeting Held on a Rotational Basis
The cooperation among the three regions, triggered by the 15th anniversary of Shandong-Yamaguchi friendship agreement and the 10th anniversary of Yamaguchi-South Gyeongsang sister agreement, began with the purpose of achieving more comprehensive regional and policy cooperation. The trilateral cooperation then continued centered around culture and youth cooperation. The three also institutionalized the trilateral exchange by holding trilateral workinglevel meetings on a rotational basis since 2006.
The most recent meeting was hosted online by Yamaguchi in December 2021. The staff from the international exchange departments and senior welfare departments of the three provinces gave presentations and held discussions on the welfare policy for the elderly.
|November 1997||Yamaguchi||∘ Gathering for East Asian Culture
∘ The 1st International Culture Symposium
|February 1998||Yamaguchi||∘ International Environmental Symposium|
|November 1999||Shandong||∘ The 2nd International Culture Symposium|
|October 2001||South Gyeongsang||∘ The 3rd International Culture Symposium|
|November 2006||Yamaguchi||∘ The 1st Trilateral Working-level Meeting
*Agreed to hold annually
∘ Trilateral Forum on Tourism
|September 2007||Shandong||∘ 2nd Trilateral Working-level Meeting|
|October 2007||Yamaguchi||∘ Commemorative Events for the 25th Anniversary of Shandong-Yamaguchi Friendship Agreement and the 20th Anniversary of Yamaguchi-South Gyeongsang Province Sister Agreement
→ Trilateral Forum (on International Exchange, International Tourism, Natural Environment)
→ Trilateral High School Sports Exchange
|March 2011||South Gyeongsang & Shandong||∘ The 3rd Trilateral Working-level Meeting
∘ Trilateral Media Exchange and Cooperation
|February 2012||Yamaguchi||∘ The 4th Trilateral Working-level Meeting|
|July 2012||Yamaguchi||∘ Commemorative Event for the 30th Anniversary of Shandong-Yamaguchi Friendship Relation and the 25th Anniversary of Yamaguchi-South Gyeongsang Province Sister Relation
→ Traditional Culture and Arts Exchange
→ Conference on Media Report Exchange
→ Friendly Sports Exchange (Table Tennis)
→ Youth Policy Experts Symposium
|August 2014||Shandong||∘ The 5th Trilateral Working-level Meeting
∘ Trilateral Provinces/Prefecture Friendly Youth Table Tennis Event
|September 2015||South Gyeongsang||∘ The 6th Trilateral Working-level Meeting
* To be held biennially onwards
(basketball event cancelled due to Middle East Respiratory Syndrome (MERS))
|August 2017||Yamaguchi||∘ The 7th Trilateral Working-level Meeting
* To be held annually onwards
∘ Commemorative Event for the 35th Anniversary of Shandong-Yamaguchi Friendship Relation and the 30th Anniversary of Yamaguchi-South Gyeongsang Province Sister Relation
→ Trilateral Provinces/Prefecture Youth Culture Performance
|∘ The 8th Trilateral Working-level Meeting
∘ Trilateral Calligraphy Exchange
∘ Yamaguchi Yume Flower Expo
|November 2019||South Gyeongsang||∘ The 9th Trilateral Working-level Meeting
∘ Traditional Martial Arts Performance at the Masan Gagopa Chrysanthemum Festival (Chinese Wushu, Japanese Naginata, Korean Taekwondo)
|November 2020||Yamaguchi Prefecture
|∘ The 10th Trilateral Working-level Meeting
∘ Discussion on promotions for exchange events in 2021(exchange of elderly welfare)
∘ Explore other new projects (commemoration of the 40th anniversary of the friendship city between Shandong and Yamaguchi in 2022, and the 35th anniversary of the sister city in South Gyeongsang and Yamaguchi)
|December 2021||Yamaguchi Prefecture
|∘ Exchange event: information exchange on welfare policy forthe elderly and discussion related to the 2022 event|
*(scheduled to be held online)
|∘ The 11th Trilateral Working-level Meeting
∘ Information exchange of oriental medicine international exchange and youth traditional musical instrument concert will be held
- The 10th Trilateral Working-level Meeting Preparation Meeting in 2020
(Source: Yamaguchi Prefecture)
- Since 1997: Exchange Program among Yamaguchi Prefectural University and Universities from Shandong and South Gyeongsang Continues
Yamaguchi Prefectural University, following an academic exchange agreement with Qufu Normal University (Shandong) and Kyungnam University (South Gyeongsang), has been running a global student exchange program in which students from the two universities are invited to visit Yamaguchi Prefectural University every summer. This exchange program developed from the Three Universities Triangle Exchange Program that existed from 1997 to 1999.
The aforementioned global student exchange program is held annually from late June to July for around three weeks. Its purpose is to promote mutual exchange among the universities and to internationalize local communities. Students from China and Korea are given opportunities to participate in various activities such as learning Japanese language, experiencing Japanese culture, homestay, undergraduate major exchange, as well as student exchange activities. Due to the spread of COVID-19, the exchange program has halted for two years since 2020, and will resume when the pandemic situation alleviates.
Furthermore, students from Yamaguchi Prefectural University also participate in shortterm study abroad programs at Qufu Normal University and Kyungnam University. Only students from the Yamaguchi Prefectural University participate in the study abroad program at the Qufu Normal University, while the program run by Kyungnam University is open to other students from universities outside of China and Japan.
- Exchange program with Departments of Yamaguchi Prefectural University
(Source: Yamaguchi Prefectural University)