UP and Japanese Federation of Bar Associations sign agreement for Comparative Law studies

| Written by Franco Gargantiel II

UP President Danilo Concepcion (center) and UP Diliman Chancellor Fidel Nemenzo (right) with representatives of the Japanese Federation of Bar Associations. Photo by Jonathan Madrid (UPMPRO).


On January 13, 2023, the University of the Philippines (UP) and the Japanese Federation of Bar Associations (JFBA) signed a Memorandum of Agreement (MOA) as a way “to strengthen the international connection between the Philippines and Japan.”

This newly signed partnership comes in the form of a comparative study of family law, nationality law, and international law between member states of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN), especially the Philippines and Japan.

Both UP and the JFBA had representatives take part in this virtual MOA signing to establish the ASEAN-Japan Comparative Law Study. Representing UP was then UP President Danilo L. Concepcion, and representing the JFBA was President Motoji Kobayashi.

Concepcion cited the significance of this signing by acknowledging the need and demand for legal services in cross-border cases involving Filipino and Japanese citizens.

“This is what we intend to address,” he said. “To be able to look at our laws with more comparative depth, so we could serve our clients better. This will eventually lead us to gaining a more profound understanding of how our laws vary and allow us to dispense more appropriate legal advice to those who seek our help.”

He added that he hopes that the two years in this program will be enough to familiarize Filipino and Japanese legal scholars with each country’s respective laws and legal practices, as well as to encourage them to create networks that would facilitate the easier flow of legal information, advice, and support, whether among individuals or institutions. “I know that we are all pushing for the success of this endeavor and I am glad that we are doing this before I end my term as UP President.”

The parties agreed that this MOA signing marked a huge turning point for both the University and the JFBA, thanks to the increase in both local and international support.