Today I announce the recipients of 48 new grants and three Publication Awards funded by the Australia-Japan Foundation (AJF). The AJF Grants Program is designed to strengthen links between our two countries by supporting activities that bring innovative perspectives to how we engage with Japan.

Australia's special strategic partnership with Japan is vital to our economic, strategic and security interests. The projects will promote our partnership with Japan in areas including economic diplomacy, science, arts and culture, security and regional relations.

Successful AJF grant proposals include:

An inaugural Australia-Japan Youth Dialogue;

Improving technology to increase the success rate of breeding Bluefin tuna in captivity and reduce the demand for overfishing of this vulnerable species; 

Disbursement of cell-lines to Australian Non Communicable Disease (NCD) researchers to help combat NCDs, which are responsible for the majority of deaths in Japan and Australia; 

Support for artists with disabilities to participate in the official opening of the restored train line that was destroyed in the 2011 Great East Japan Earthquake and Tsunami;

A National Parliamentary Fellowships Program for young Australians and Japanese; and

A Touch Football program encouraging girls' participation in regional Japan.

The AJF was established in 1976 and is an important contributor to the Australia-Japan bilateral relationship.

More information about the AJF, the grants program and a full list of successful grant recipients is available on the Australia Japan Foundation website.

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