About the Middle East Institute of Japan (MEIJ)

The Middle East Institute of Japan was founded in February 1956 as a private organization by a group of university professors and intellectuals specializing in the Middle Eastern affairs. Their determined efforts have made the Institute the first and most prestigious organization in the field of the Middle East studies in Japan.

Shortly thereafter in 1956, the Second Middle East War occasioned by the Egyptian nationalization of the Suez Canal, carved in relief the increasing political and economical importance of the region on the world map.

The Middle East Institute of Japan was authorized in 1960 as a juridical body under the supervision of the Minister for Foreign Affairs, and in April, 2012, was registered as a Public Interest Incorporated Foundation authorized by the Prime Minister.

The original activities of the Institute aimed at promoting correct understanding of the region and its affairs among the Japanese public, through providing timely and relevant information and commentaries. With increased geopolitical importance of the Middle East, Japan’s interest in and attention to the region was expanded and deepened. The Institute has responded to this situation with its research and publication activities covering the region’s politics, economy, religion, culture and history.

As a private entity, the Middle East Institute of Japan runs its activities with the financial support of its Members, corporate and individual, under the supervision of the Board of Executive Directors, and presently has 12 research fellows (5 full-time, 4 visiting and 3 associate) in addition to an administrative staff under director.

The Institute provides the Members with a variety of services, and carries out public promotional activities as well. Its quarterly journal “The Journal of Middle Eastern Studies” (in Japanese) is widely distributed as a most learned publication on the Middle East.

General Information of MEIJ


The Middle East Institute of Japan, Juridical Foundation
Registered Office:
Hirakawacho Court 6F, 1-1-1,Hirakawacho, Chiyoda-ku, Tokyo, Japan (zip102-0093)
Founded in February 1956. Reorganized in October 1960 as a juridical foundation under the supervision of the Minister for Foreign Affairs. On April 1, 2012, registered as a juridical body authorized by the Prime Minister.
Board of Executive Directors:
Mr. Mikio Sasaki, Honorable Chairman, Mitsubishi Corporation
Mr. Akitaka Saiki, Former Vice Minister for Foreign Affairs, MOFA
Vice President:
Mr. Kiyoshi Asako, Former Ambassador to Bahrain
Executive Director:
Dr. Masayuki Yamauchi, Professor Emeritus of the University of Tokyo
Mr. Tetsuhiro Hosono, Chairman & CEO for JOGMEC
Special Advisor:
Dr. Tatsuo Arima, Former Special Envoy of the Government of Japan

2.Purposes of Activities

  • Researches and studies of politics, economy, culture and history of the Middle East.
  • Collection, provision and publication of basic, practical data, knowledge and relevant information on the Middle East.
  • Exchange of information and promotion of visits between Japan and the Middle East.
  • Promotion of understanding and friendship between the Japanese people and the peoples of the Middle East

3.Operational Fund

The operational fund comes from the Funding Members’ membership fees and from revenues of research and other undertakings


  • Corporate Membership: annually Yen500, 000/lot, more than one lot
  • Individual Membership: annually Yen10, 000/lot or more
  • Special Individual Member: annually Yen100, 000/lot or more

The Corporate Members count about 90, including major leading Japanese companies of the private sector in various circles of business, manufacturing, construction, oil, mass-media, etc., and government agencies as well (as of March, 2010).

The Individual Members count about 100, who are journalists, scholars and students interested in Middle Eastern affairs. The Special Individual Members are same privileged personally as top executives of the Corporate Members.

5.Member’s Privileges

  • Free Access to the exclusive reports and documents of the Institute
  • To receive the quarterly “Journals of Middle Eastern Studies” by post for free and other publications of the Institute for free or at a discount rate
  • To receive “Middle East Daily News” bulletins by e-mail for free
  • To attend lecture meetings arranged by the Institute for free or at a discount rate
  • Top executives of Corporate Members and Special Individual Members are invited to join a series of Top Meetings (see below)

6.Major Activities

1. Research and Other Undertakings

Conducting research works, arranging seminars and symposia, assisting academic exchange programs and engaging in other projects, on contracts or upon requests of the Government agencies and private institutions

2. Seminars and Meetings

  • Top Meetings
    Monthly breakfast meetings with top officials of relevant Ministries, prominent intellectuals or business leaders, exclusive for the top executives of the Corporate Members and Individual Members
  • Briefing on Current Middle East situation
    Briefing by senior officials of the Ministry of the Foreign Affairs on Current Middle East situation
  • Speeches by Visiting Middle East VIPs
  • Analysis Report Meeting on Middle East
    Reports and Comments by the Institute’s fellow researchers on issues and topics of the Middle East
  • Seminars to Promote Understanding Middle East and Islam
    A series of seminars by researchers and professors to expand and deepen understanding of the Middle East and Islam among the public
  • Reception “ To Meet with Ambassadors ”
    Annual reception to meet with all the Japanese Ambassadors to the Middle East countries

3. Publications