Disaster Caused by Heavy Rain in Amami Islands

 Recently, disastrous heavy rain has hit the Amami Islands. I would like to express my heartfelt sympathy (for the parties concerned). If they have any requests to us from during this time, we are ready to actively respond to their needs.

Prefectural Task Force on Emergent Employment and Economy Measures

 Next week, I will convoke the Tottori prefectural task force on emergent employment and economy measures, where we will discuss our immediate economy and employment measures. In relation thereto, I visited SEIKO EPSON Corporation the other day and asked them to maintain their business operation in Tottori Prefecture. During the visit, they expressed their intention to establish their new business institution within our prefecture. For the company and this plan, I think it necessary for us, the Tottori prefectural administration, to offer our own support measures.

9 Governors’ Conference for Early Completion of Primary Expressway Network

 The other day, 9 prefectural governors held a conference aimed at realizing the early completion of the primary expressway network and made requests to the relevant parties, including Minister Mabuchi of the Ministry of Land, Infrastructure and Transport, for early construction of the expressways. In response, Minister Mabuchi acknowledged that the future public investment should mainly focus on resolution of the missing links (in the expressway network).

Collaborative Project with Yoshimoto Kogyo Co., Ltd.

 Yesterday, I visited Yoshimoto Kogyo Co., Ltd. and held a press conference with President Yoshino and company entertainers. I hope that this opportunity will enable us to send out information not only to the Kansai Region but also nationwide.

Release of Black Bears

 Today, the on-site countermeasure office on the issue of black bears will be set up by the municipality of Yazu Town (in eastern Tottori Prefecture). The Tottori prefectural administration will form a collaborative system and provide support to them. Although we compiled the supplementary budget for the measures against bear-related damages in the prefectural assembly’s session in last September, it’s already about to run out, so we will disburse about 9 million yen for additional expenses from the reserve fund and appropriate it for the measures against various problems caused by black bears.

Measures against Decreasing Ratio of First-Class Rice

 The ratio of first-class rice has sharply declined nationwide. Next week, we will hold a discussion meeting with relevant parties and organizations in the agricultural sector in order to exchange ideas as to what can be done. For the time being, the prefectural administration will mainly focus on setting up consultation counters and publicizing our loan system in order to protect and develop our key industry of agriculture on a firm basis.

Food-Related Promotion Event in Tokyo

 In Marunouchi House in Tokyo, an event is taking place now in order to promote “Tottori’s foods.” In addition, at our antenna shop in Tokyo, we are planning to invite managing chefs of restaurants and others and hold a business negotiation fair for Tottori’s foods. I’m hoping and expecting that the foodstuffs of Tottori Prefecture will be used in restaurants in Tokyo as luxury ingredients.

“Eco-Friendly Commuting Day” etc.

 Starting from today, every Wednesday and Friday will be designated as “Eco-Friendly Commuting Days,” and experimental projects will kick off in order to encourage the use of public transportation.  This weekend, Gainare Tottori (a professional soccer team based in Tottori Prefecture) has a good chance of winning the JFL (Japan Football League) Championship. I want every one of the prefectural residents to be enthusiastic about it.

Q. Is it likely that the new business institution to be established by SEIKO EPSON Corporation will be able to absorb all the personnel of the current plants?

 The new institution alone will not be capable of providing positions to all of them. EPSON Group as a whole will absorb all the personnel.

Q. In the event that the personnel are relocated across Japan, how do you propose to deal with the employees who cannot leave Tottori Prefecture due to family matters and the like?

 (After the reporter’s mentioning that such employees might not be able to keep their job as a result,) I think it necessary to lay out comprehensive employment measures, by providing support to the new business institution as well as using the appropriate funds.

Q. Regarding the subsidy for Gainare Tottori, don’t you think that they need to disclose information on their financial situation? And what will you do if they ask the prefecture for additional subsidies after being promoted to the J2 League?

 (After the reporter’s mentioning that the subsidy will be procured from tax money,) The prefectural administration will request that Gainare’s side fulfill their accountability by proactively disclosing the information on their financial situation or managerial policies to the prefectural residents and their fans. We take this capital injection as a necessary kind of support for Gainare to be promoted to the J League, and this will be our last financial aid for them, in principle. That’s why we don’t have any plan to provide subsidies in other areas of sports on the same level as in Gainare’s case. However, it will be possible and appropriate to provide support for sports promotion itself in the future.

Q. Regarding the Greater Kansai Association, isn’t there a concern that only urban areas will see the benefits of it, which will result in Tottori Prefecture’s being overpowered by the urban areas?

 Tottori Prefecture participates in this association on a partial basis, and I’m not very concerned about the possibility that we will be overtaken by the central parts of the Kansai Region. On the contrary, I’m expecting that we might be able to attract potential tourists in the Kansai Region, or develop potential tourism markets overseas. In addition, for the purpose of preventing the Greater Kansai Association from conducting unilateral operation with the focus on urban areas, I will try and secure substantive guarantees by making sure that the association will adopt the consensus principle, under which the association will not be allowed to exercise their power on any prefecture unless the consensus is reached.

Q. Today, the Asiana Airlines’ Yonago-Seoul Flight Service will carry its 300,000th passenger (since the commencement of operation). Will you be specific about the prospects of this service?

 Today we will be able to mark the milestone of 300,000 passengers in number who have got on board the flights, thanks to the hard work and dedication of countless individuals, which I greatly appreciate. In the future, as the Korean TV drama Athena, which was filmed partially in Tottori Prefecture, will start to be broadcast in South Korea, we will seize the momentum and aim to popularize and upgrade this flight service to a more convenient one. By making the most of the strong yen, moreover, we will try and increase the number of passengers of the flights from Japan to South Korea toward the yearend.

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