Bid to Host the International Manga Summit

 The selection of Japan’s candidate site for the International Manga Summit, which will be held in 2012, is in the final stage. In order to request that Tottori Prefecture be assigned to host this event, I will visit the Management Headquarters of the Asia Manga Summit (as tentatively translated) on February 16. I will seize this opportunity and visit other key figures.
 Tottori Prefecture has produced prominent manga artists, and the fact is closely related to regional development activities here. In consideration of the manga works by these artists which established a reputation on a global scale, Tottori Prefecture is the perfect venue for the manga summit. Our bid to host the event will be based on this notion.

Issuing Coins to Commemorate 60th Anniversary of Local Autonomy Act

 In order to commemorate the 60th anniversary of enforcement of the Local Autonomy Act, consecutive approvals have been obtained to issue coins in the motif of each prefecture. Tottori Prefecture has been engaged in the related negotiations with the national government, and the coins of Tottori Prefecture will finally be issued in 2011.
 Since they are commemorative coins, our regional characteristics will be reflected in the designs. In the negotiations with the national government so far, it’s been proposed that the San’in Coast Geopark should be one motif for the coins. However, as two types of coins will be issued, the designs will not necessarily be limited to the coast.
 We would like to be given opportunities to collect opinions from the prefectural residents. We hope to invite experts in the field of designing to this process and launch a review committee. We are making adjustments in order to launch it on February 22.

Road Construction

A 4-kilometer portion of Tottori’s general prefectural highway, the Kawahara Inter Route (as tentatively translated), will be open on March 14. Aside from the opening ceremony, related events including a walk rally will be held on March 7, one week before the opening. The Tottori Expressway is also under construction without any major problems, and it’s expected to be open around the end of March.

Projects Sponsored by the MLIT and Planned to Be Conducted in Fiscal 2010

 Yesterday, the Ministry of Land, Infrastructure and Transport announced the details of their tentative budget allocation. Among the newly presented items, I appreciate the budget for the Shichiyama Bypass (in eastern Tottori). Funds are earmarked for the projects related to the Hosokawa Tunnel and the improvement around the entrance of the Shichiyama Tunnel. If these budgets are implemented, the tunnels are likely to be constructed and opened between Fiscal 2011 and 2012.
 In combination with the improvement around the entrance of the Shichiyama Tunnel, if Tottori Prefecture proceeds with the projects to expand prefectural highways and so forth, in line with the trend of the Great Exchange Era, it will be possible to establish a route for travelers from the Kansai Region to go through the Shichiyama Tunnel and reach the Tottori Sand Dune. Tottori Prefecture’s side will need to study how the related roads should be constructed or improved.
 In addition, with regard to what we call “No.3 section of Tottori West Expressway of San'in Expressway”, this budgetary announcement specifies the adoption of national bonds for land acquisition. It will mean that the arrangements have been completed for the commencement of land purchase. In combination with the previously announced items, most of the budgetary requests that we have made seem likely to be met now.
 Concerning the rivers, we have maintained that bank protection projects should be implemented along the downstream areas of the Ohashi River, and the budgets for the related construction projects are included in this unofficial budgetary announcement.
 This is still a tentative budget allocation, and I take it as a measure for the ministry to communicate with and provide information to our prefecture’s side. Now it’s necessary for us to start analyzing this information and deliberate how we should go about relevant constructions and what kind of system should be organized in the future.

Schedule, etc.

 Tottori Prefecture IJU Turn Big Counseling Fair (as tentatively translated) will be held in Osaka City on February 11.
 Prefectural staff members of Tottori and Shimane Prefectures (both in the San’in Region) will complete a book titled “San’in Lohas,” with a view to publishing it as early as next spring. They will soon work on full-fledged writing toward the publication, and I will exchange ideas with them today. Beyond the prefectural borders, the staff of both the prefectures will jointly publish a book to promote regional charm. This is a very rare challenge in the national arena. I expect it to be a starting point for the two prefectures to present a full-scale united front. I hear that the book will be targeted at female readers. I’m looking forward to the contents.

Q. Concerning the road construction and according to the national documents unofficially presented yesterday, am I right in understanding that the budgets for related projects other than buried cultural property researches have been approved?

 (After the reporter’s mentioning that, with regard to the 2nd phase construction of the Tottori West Expressway, requests for additional budget allocation for the purpose of research into buried cultural property are met by allocating national bonds for land acquisition, and that the bridge construction plans in Nawa and Yodoe areas in western Tottori are budgeted in the said national announcement,) It’s impossible for us to clarify the precise differences between this announcement and the one presented by the MLIT last year. We are willing to analyze them as Tottori Prefecture’s administration. We received the documents yesterday and just started organizing them as far as we can tell. However, in consideration of the bridge construction projects included in the announcement, the national government’s determination to connect missing links is beginning to become clearer and clearer.
 For example, in relation to the Shichiyama Bypass, the Hosokawa Tunnel is clearly referred to. I can take it as their declaration to establish a proper connection between the Kansai Region and Tottori Prefecture. It’s to the credit of the national government that they expressed their intention to connect the missing links.

Q. Tottori prefectural business support center in Vladivostok, Russia (TOTTORI Trade Center) has opened. How do you feel about it?

 This time, we have worked on this project with a determination to publicize Tottori Prefecture in Russia. Thanks to the efforts of relevant parties, including President Adachi of the Promotion Conference for Japan Sea Rim Economic Exchange (as tentatively translated), we were able to hold an opening ceremony in a hotel in Vladivostok, and an additional ceremony was held in a local venue after that. With the attendance of local key figures, both the ceremonies were a great success.
 I fervently hope that the utilization of this facility will lead to the active flow of cargo and people not only in the two prefectures of the San’in Region but also across western Japan. I also hope and propose that relevant parties in Tottori Prefecture will use this facility in order to create their own routes, collect information, and receive guide services on the ground.

Q. Regarding the bid to host the Manga summit, who are you planning to meet in Tokyo, and what other places are you going to visit?

 Although the adjustments are still under way, I’m planning to visit the head office of the Management Headquarters of the Asia Manga Summit and promote the charm of Tottori Prefecture. I will meet the staff there. I will also visit Mizuki Shigeru Productions and solicit for cooperation.
 By the way, NHK’s serialized TV drama titled “Gegege no Nyobo (Gegege’s Wife)” will start to be broadcast next month. Its early scenes seem to be set in the San’in region. As most other scenes will probably be set in Chofu City, Tokyo, we are making adjustments to meet Mayor Nagatomo (of Chofu City). With a view to utilizing the broadcast of Gegege no Nyobo as an opportunity to publicize each of the two regions (Chofu and Tottori), we are planning to exchange ideas and seek for mutual collaboration.

Q. An Upper House member of Tottori Prefecture joined the DPJ. As the head of a prefectural administration, what do you expect from this, and what impacts do you anticipate?

 I was surprised, to tell the truth. It will take a while to see how it will affect our prefectural administration. As long as he is a national Diet member of our prefecture, I expect him to continue exerting his efforts for our region and our prefectural residents.
 His transfer (from the LDP to the DPJ) must have caused confusion and wide repercussions. He needs to make all-out efforts and provide explanations to his supporters himself, I expect.

Q. The prefectural board of education referred to personnel matters concerning Superintendent Nakanaga in the regular session yesterday. How do you feel about it, and what do you think of his successor?

 (After the reporter’s mentioning that Superintendent Nakanaga announced his intention to resign from the prefectural board of education as of the end of this fiscal year,) I’m now contemplating on who should be his successor. His term as an educational board member will soon expire, and I hear that he is eager to return to his private life instead of being reelected. I have no choice but to respect his sentiment. He’s devoted himself to the educational reforms for our prefecture, and I feel as if my right arm has been severed.

Q. Which do you think it will be appropriate to select the successor from, the personnel in administrative service, or educational service?

 Both have advantages and disadvantages. The superintendent is not the only staff member who will do the work, and I will appoint the personnel in consideration of the entire organization.
 The staff member in administrative service will be better at communicating with gubernatorial divisions, business sectors, municipal mayors, and so on, which will be an advantage. The one in educational service will be able to surely handle the practices such as the treatment of curriculum and so on. It’s impossible to say which is better.

Q. Regarding DBS Cruise Ferry, the most important element will be the main cargo, I think. How are the prospects of the ship service?

 We are conducting various measures. This is perhaps the only ship service which provides passage to Russia on a regular basis. In that sense, the prospects are considerably good.

Copyright(C) 2006~ 鳥取県(Tottori Prefectural Government) All Rights Reserved. 法人番号 7000020310000