Mr. Shigeru Mizuki Named as a Person of Cultural Merit

 Mr. Shigeru Mizuki, a manga artist born in Tottori Prefecture, has been named as a Person of Cultural Merit. He has been a leading figure in the development of culture, art and regions through his manga comics depicting Yokai (specter) characters and wars. I congratulate him on his nomination from the bottom of my heart.

Conference to Establish Preparatory Committee for International Manga Summit

 On October 30, we are scheduled to invite several manga artists and set up the preparatory committee for the International Manga Summit in Tottori.  In this conference, we are planning to propose that the relevant information should be sent out to the national public through promotion posters, and that a cheering squad be organized for the summit. I will be glad if these initiatives related to manga comics help enrich and vitalize regions and this country.

Gainare’ Winning JFL Championship and Hearing by J-League Chairman

 Gainare Tottori (a professional soccer team based in Tottori Prefecture) has won the Japan Football League Championship. I would like to send my congratulations to the players and their supporters. I will go to Tokyo together with Tottori City mayor and the president of SC TOTTORI Co., Ltd. (Gainare Tottori) tomorrow, when the J-League chairman’s hearing will be held. I hope the chairman’s side will acknowledge that Gainare Tottori is qualified to be promoted to the J-League and that the regional side is ready and prepared to support the soccer team, which I expect will be a huge boost for Gainare’s promotion to the J2 League.

Requests to Tokyo for Early Resolution of Abduction Issue

 During this visit to Tokyo, I will also make requests, along with other prefectural governors, as a member of the “Assembled Governors for the Return of Victims of Abduction by North Korea” to the State Minister in Charge of North Korea Abductions of Japanese Nationals for speedy resolution of the abduction issue.

Opening of Forum to Consider Decentralized Society Led by Regions

 This weekend, we are planning to invite young prefectural governors and hold a forum aimed at discussing the future of decentralization. We are going to call for the (need of) promoting regional sovereignty and decentralization to the national public; these issues seem to be in deadlock from the perspective of regional side.

Permit Application to Establish Greater Kansai Association

 I’m scheduled to go to Tokyo on November 1 and submit to the Ministry of Internal Affairs and Communications the permit application for establishment of the Greater Kansai Association, probably with other governors. If possible, I will seize this opportunity and exchange ideas with governors of Hyogo and Kyoto Prefectures about how to utilize the San’in Geopark in the future.

Courtesy Call on Governor Hirai by Yoshimoto’s Company Entertainers

 As part of our promotion strategy in collaboration with the Kansai Region, we decided to promote Tottori Prefecture jointly with Yoshimoto Kogyo Co., Ltd. As its premier event, it’s been decided that Yoshimoto Kogyo’s company entertainers will visit Tottori Prefecture for the purpose of promoting Tottori by using blogs or monthly magazines. We will seize this opportunity and publicize Tottori’s attractions such as hot springs and crabs to areas and regions outside Tottori.

Events to Mark 5th Anniversary of Lake Nakaumi’s Entry in Ramsar Convention

 In the area of environmental issues, commemorative events and related projects are planned in order to mark the 5th year since registry of Lake Nakaumi in the list of the Ramsar Convention.

Opening of Symposium for Creation of Lawns

 The new method of growing lawns called the “Tottori Method” has been registered as a trademark, and the movement of creating lawns is spreading nationwide. As Tottori Prefecture has been promoting the Tottori Method in addition to other traditional ways of creating lawns and sending relevant information nationwide, we have decided to hold a symposium for the movement of lawn creation. We have also decided to establish a network for the creation of lawns by means of the Tottori Method on a national level with the support of the national public.

110-Kilometer Walk in San’in Coast Geopark

 In order to celebrate the entry of the San’in Coast Geopark into the Global Geopark Network, the 110-kilometer Walk in San’in Coast Geopark will kick off. I hope that lots of people will join this event and enjoy autumn.

Revision of Support Plan for Victims of Domestic Violence

 We will revise the support plan for victims of domestic violence in our prefecture at an early date. We will include new measures such as more emphasized educational activities for the youth or enhanced support for children in the plan. We are also planning to conduct a (forum for) public comment.

Q. Today Osaka Prefectural Assembly has approved the establishment of the Greater Kansai Association, and all the relevant prefectures are likely to approve the said establishment. How do you feel about it now?

 In terms of creating a new form of decentralization, it will be a huge advantage for the regional side to have obtained the tool of “the greater association.” The said association could be capable of taking over clerical tasks from the national government. For example, it would be possible for the greater association to manage national parks including the San’in Coast Geopork, which are now managed by the Ministry of the Environment.

Q. Tottori Prefecture has an accessible image in the Kansai Region, but I have the impression that the reverse is not the case. How do you plan to make the Kansai Region’s image of Tottori more accessible?

 I hope that the collaboration with Yoshimoto Kogyo, which is a centerpiece of the Kansai Region, will shorten the emotional distance between the Kansai Region and Tottori Prefecture. We will also work on developing brand-based tactics for foodstuffs and the like aimed at the Kansai Region.

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