• Press Release

NYK President Soga Addresses Recruits at 2024 Welcoming Ceremony

On April 1, NYK welcomed 69 recruits at a ceremony held at the company’s Tokyo head office. Below is a translation of the address given by NYK president Takaya Soga.

President’s Speech
Good morning, everyone. I am NYK president Takaya Soga. On behalf of the 35,000 NYK Group members, 52,000 including non-Japanese seafarers, I would like to extend a hearty welcome to the 65 new graduates (43 land-based employees and 22 seafarers) and the four mid-career hires joining us today.

As a senior member of the NYK Group, please allow me to say a few words as you take your first steps.

Founded in 1885, NYK marks its 139th year of operation this year. Our long voyage has not always been smooth sailing. We have navigated numerous challenges, including World War II, one of our most significant hardships, which led to the loss of 172 ships of 1.02 million tons and the precious lives of 5,312 staff members and seafarers. Yet, we made a fresh start with no wartime compensation under extremely harsh conditions and have continued to overcome adversity along the way, such as the 1985 Plaza Accord (which caused a rapid yen appreciation), the 2008 financial crisis, the 2011 Great East Japan Earthquake, and more recently, Japan’s Noto Peninsula Earthquake, the Russia-Ukraine conflict, and the tension in the Middle East.

Under such circumstances, the NYK Group has survived and continues to thrive because we have always responded to the social demands of the time. In the Meiji era (1868–1912), we pioneered diplomatic routes to improve Japan’s international standing and modernize the country. In the postwar period, we supported Japan’s reconstruction and rapid economic growth through trade. We have continually delivered energy resources, medical supplies, and daily necessities worldwide, protecting society’s lifelines under our slogan “Keep the logistics lifeline open!” — even during the COVID-19 pandemic and the disruptions caused by international tensions.

We do this to fulfill our group’s mission of “Bringing value to life,” and we will continue to do so in the future.

Nowadays, the world is implementing environmental measures to address extreme weather and climate change. Reducing a large amount of greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions from the shipping industry is a pressing issue for all of us. In November 2023, we released NYK Group ESG Story 2023 and the NYK Group Decarbonization Story , detailing how we will achieve our ambitious goals for 2030. To fully understand our visions, I request you to read these materials along with our four-year medium-term management plan, “Sail Green, Drive Transformation 2026 — A Passion for Planetary Wellbeing.

Please work with energy and passion and show gratitude to those who support you. Let’s work together and do our best.

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