The First Sale of Twentieth Century Pear

 Autumn is on the way, and in the harvest season we have the pleasure of offering the taste of Twentieth Century pears to the national public. On August 28, we will hold a first sale ceremony in a marketplace in Osaka, which will kick off a series of campaigns.

National Economic Policies

 Recently, the national government has been deliberating economic policies. The frameworks of these policies are becoming clearer through media reports, and indeed some of them seem promising.
 The details have yet to be revealed, but I hope that they will include comprehensive agricultural, industrial and commercial measures. The supplementary budget we hope to present in September will reflect the information we have collected.

Conference of Major Cities in the Japan Sea Rim Region

 Tomorrow, the conference of major cities in the Japan Sea Rim Region will be held in Yonago City. Yonago and Sakaiminato Cities will participate, with Tottori City as an observer. Some cities from other prefectures, including Shimane, Niigata and Fukui, are also planning to take part. From overseas, cities in South Korea and China will join.  I have been invited to this conference to talk about the Japan Sea Rim exchange. Also, the mayor of Tonghae, Mr. Kim Hak-Gi, will visit Japan, so I will meet him tomorrow. I hear that Mayor Kim is very eager about the realization of the ship service by the DBS Cruise Ferry. I also hear that he is scheduled to have a talk with Sakaiminato City's Mayor Nakamura on various issues during his stay in Japan. I will meet Mayor Nakamura tomorrow in order to hear his report, including details of the talk, or exchange ideas.  The four cities surrounding Lake Nakaumi (Yonago, Sakaiminato, Matsue and Yasugi Cities) are eager to discuss this matter, and I will make arrangements for the meeting when I go to Yonago.

Establishment of Council for Nakaumi, Lake Shinji and Mt. Daisen Tourism Zone

 The Council for the Establishment of the Lake Nakaumi, Lake Shinji and Mt. Daisen Tourism Zone (as tentatively named and translated) will be held tomorrow. It will consist mainly of people from the ministerial and business sectors. I have discussed this with Governor Mizoguchi of Shimane Prefecture and we are ready to offer our full support.

Opening of the Antenna Shop ”Food Capital Plaza Tottori” in Tokyo

 On August 29, our antenna shop will open in Tokyo. Tottori Prefecture’s long-held wish will finally be realized.  On the opening day, we will meet Mr. Shigeru Mizuki for the tape cutting ceremony. We will also meet the sax player MALTA, a musician born in Tottori Prefecture. We are pleased that he has graciously offered to rush to this event in the middle of a concert tour.  The youngsters who are willing to support Tottori Prefecture are also planning an event on the night of the 29th in front of Shinbashi Station under the catchphrase “ArigaTottori (Thank You from Tottori)” Among the participants are Mr.Yasuda, who is the leader of Yasuda Dai Circus (a famous comedy trio in Japan) and graduate of Tottori Johoku High School, and Ms. Reimi Yamashita, a singer born in Yonago City, Tottori.  The antenna shop is run by Tottori Prefecture. We are trying to make it different from other shops by offering a variety of specialty goods such as Twentieth Century pears, kodama (small-sized) watermelons, Gokumi Watermelons (a branded watermelon in Kurayoshi, Tottori Prefecture), and character goods featuring  “Gegege no Kitaro” and “Detective Conan” as well as rare items such as smoked boar meat.  On its 2nd floor, we opened a restaurant named “Osteria Monte-Mare Tottorine” in order to promote foodstuffs made in Tottori Prefecture as Italian-style ingredients.

Mutual Support Agreement in Emergencies between Tokushima and Tottori

 September 1 is Disaster Prevention Day. To coincide with this memorial day, I will hold the signing ceremony with Governor Iizumi of Tokushima Prefecture to execute the mutual support agreement. Tottori and Tokushima Prefectures had already entered into a collaborative relationship despite the great geographical distance, and we agreed to further develop this tie. In particular, each of us will initiate a project to establish an emergency assistance team in charge of disaster response which would be dispatched mutually in order to form a support system by discussing the relevant issues, including how many staff members are needed to continue the operation. This kind of agreement between remote areas has never been seen. I think it’s a rare undertaking in the national arena.

Q. On August 12, the staff of DBS Cruise Ferry came to Sakaiminato City. How much have they collected as ante at present?

 They reported that a little more than 3 billion won had been collected at that time. The amount has not yet reached the 5 billion won required by the South Korean Government for permission to launch the ship service.

Q. Do you have a clear idea about when the time limit will be for the commencement of construction of the terminal (in Sakai Port)?

 We haven’t formulated such details. I want DBS Cruise Ferry to reach a conclusion some time in early September, or at least by the end of September.

Q. In the footage of the opening ceremony of the Beijing Olympic Games, the name of the Japan Sea was displayed as “the Japan Sea”. What is your feeling about this?

 It’ a matter between nations, which should be dealt with at international levels. It’s a question of how the international community recognizes it. Local autonomies have no say in this matter.

Q. With regard to Gainare Tottori (a professional soccer team based in Tottori), do you have any intention to ask them for more transparency in their management?

 (After the reporter’s mentioning that the team is sponsored by Tottori Prefecture) Yes, I do. They are making reports about their management to a certain degree; however, many people are exerting themselves for the team by collecting donations and so on. The team is supposed to disclose all information about their management conditions.  I hear that every professional soccer team is struggling to survive a tough management situation with the support from business sectors and local people. If Gainare is promoted to J2 League, we will have to establish a support system like it. It’s a matter of course that the team's management needs to be transparent to the local public.

Q. In the current state of affairs, does anything hinder the disclosure of the team’s financial statements for the last fiscal year and the like, as information belonging to the prefecture?

 It needs concrete investigation. Things will go more smoothly if Gainare’side discloses the information voluntarily. We will make some adjustments later.

Q. Various kinds of antenna shops are run by other prefectures and I think it’s extremely hard to continue successful sales. Do you have any strategies in the works?

 Getting people talking about it in Tokyo is one of them. We have various events in the works. For example as an initial step, in relation to promoting Mt. Daisen-related brands such as pears, Daisen Ham (a company based in Tottori) seems to be planning events. We are going to put our heads together in order to promote the sales and foster momentum.  In combination with the measures for the shop itself, as I discussed with Governor Mizoguchi of Shimane Prefecture, I think we can hold events and promote sales by a joint campaign of Food Capital Plaza Tottori (as tentatively translated) and Shimanekan, which is located in Nihonbashi.

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