The purpose for the reception was to personally thank the many “… British for their contribution to rescue efforts and donation drives after the March 2011 earthquake and tsunami.” In a speech Emperor Akihito stated:
It was truly heartening that so many people in this country not only expressed their profound sympathy for the victims of the calamity but also promptly organized a wide range of valuable relief activities to help those in need. Your kind and practical response has, I presume, further strengthened the deep friendship that has already existed for such a long time between the peoples of our two countries.
This afternoon the imperial couple arrived in Tokyo, Japan after celebration Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II’s Diamond Jubilee celebrations. According to the newspaper, Mainichi Daily News via the Imperial Household Agency, Emperor Akihito will resume his official duties on Monday.
Sources: Japan Times and Mainichi Daily News via the IHA