Kubota chairman awarded France’s National Medal

By Leila Steed09 July 2021

The Chairman of Japanese manufacturer Kubota has been awarded the French National Order of Merit (Ordre national du Mérite) Medal in recognition of Kubota’s “long-standing services” to France.

Masatoshi Kimata, Kubota’s chairman and representative director at the French embassy in Tokyo, Japan Kubota’s chairman and representative director at the French Embassy in Tokyo, Japan. Left to right: Consul General Jules Irrmann, Chairman Masatoshi Kimata, Ambassador Philippe Setton, Cousul for Trade and Investment Director Pascal Gondrand.

Masatoshi Kimata, chairman and representative director of Kubota, was presented with the medal at a ceremony at the French Embassay in Tokyo, Japan.

One of the country’s highest honours and similar to the Legion of Honor Medal, the National Order of Merit Medal is traditionally bestowed on French citizens for “outstanding achievements”.

The award recognises Kubota’s contributions to the French job market and the overall “economic development” of the country.

Kubota established itself in France in 1974 and has since grown its presence to include a manufacturing plant and five local subsidiaries. It employs around 1,000 staff in France.

Masatoshi Kimata said, “It is a wonderful honour to be awarded this decoration, which would not have come about without the dedicated efforts of everyone concerned.

“Ever since 1974, when Kubota first made inroads there, France has hosted our core operations in Europe, allowing us to increase our presence in the region by distributing tractors, construction machineries, and industrial engines.

“For us, France is, and shall remain a vital location for the Kubota Group.”

What is the National Order of Merit? 

Established in 1963 by President Charles de Gaulle, France’s National Order of Merit (Ordre national du Mérite) is an institution of the French Republic.

The second national Order after the Legion of Honor, it is responsible for recognising the outstand achievements made by French citizens and aims to “encourage the lifeblood of the country”.

What is the National Order of Merit Medal?

Every year the National Order of Merit institute rewards both civilians and military personnel with the National Order of Merit Medal.

The medal is awarded to (traditionally French) citizens who have achieved a level of “distinguished merit” in any given field, and is normally presented to them by the country’s president.

Individuals decorated with the medal become members of the National Order of Merit institution, which comprises the ranks of Knight, Officer and Commander, and the titles of Grand Officer and Grand Cross.

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