LONDON (Kyodo) Hitachi Ltd. said Tuesday it has appointed Stephen Gomersall, who was British ambassador to Japan until last month, as its chief executive for Europe, Hitachi’s senior representative in the region.

Gomersall, who had spent a total of 14 years in Japan as a diplomat, will take up the position Oct. 4, the Japanese company said.

The 56-year-old former diplomat will be posted at Hitachi Europe Ltd.’s office in Maidenhead, near London, and will mainly work to strengthen Hitachi’s presence in Europe, the company said.

“This is an exciting opportunity to play a leading role in the future European development of a leading global solutions provider,” he was quoted as saying by the major electrical appliances manufacturer.

Gomersall joined the Foreign and Commonwealth Office in 1970. He retired from the diplomatic service in July.

At present, a senior executive at Hitachi’s Tokyo head office doubles as chief executive for Europe, Hitachi said.

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