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Message from the New Governor of Fukuoka Prefecture

Updated:2021年4月22日更新 print

Message from the New Governor of Fukuoka Prefecture
Thursday, April 15, 2021


 I am Seitaro Hattori, now inaugurated as governor of Fukuoka Prefecture.
 I am very conscious of the weight of my responsibilities in leading the Fukuoka Prefectural Government under its mandate from the citizens of this prefecture.
 During my electoral campaign, I visited various areas throughout the prefecture. I believe that the short but direct dialogues I had at that time with citizens and the municipalities about various issues allowed me to create new bonds with them. Highly valuing these bonds and considering the citizens to be at the center of the prefectural administration, I hope to thoroughly and practically evaluate what I must do for the sake of the citizens, taking action to ensure that everyone in the prefecture will be able to live with smiles and a feeling of security.
 During my term of four years, I will be sincerely and honestly committed to governing the prefecture to match citizens’ expectations. I look forward to your support.
 The challenge we must tackle most urgently now is combatting the COVID-19 pandemic. I understand that all citizens hope to restore a society where they can live with a feeling of security by overcoming the ongoing COVID-19 crisis. We will adopt thorough COVID-19 control measures, secure a larger number of beds for those infected, and strengthen our system for providing medical care. We will also smoothly implement a COVID-19 vaccination program and strive towards ensuring the recovery of the pandemic-affected local economy. Moreover, we will pursue initiatives to sow the seeds of future economic growth, nurture new buds, and foster new growth. We believe that this is essential, especially in such a difficult situation.
 Fukuoka Prefecture has suffered severe damage due to floods for four years consecutively, beginning with the 2017 north Kyushu flood. We will not only accelerate our efforts towards post-disaster recovery and community reconstruction but also adopt thorough measures for disaster management, disaster risk reduction, and greater disaster resilience in order to prevent the recurrence of similar disasters. We will also construct or improve infrastructure as the foundation for future development, including airports, expressways, bypass roads, and other main roads.
 I hope to make Fukuoka Prefecture a prefecture where every citizen can naturally do what they believe they deserve to do, such as working in the place they are familiar with, living healthily for a long term, or having and raising children with a sense of security.
 Enabling citizens to work requires ensuring employment and job opportunities for them. For that purpose, we will fully support and promote small and medium-size enterprises, which employ 80% of employed workers in Fukuoka Prefecture.
 We will also reinvigorate agriculture, forestry and fisheries, which are the prefecture’s key industries, as profitable, promising industries that young people wish to enter. We will make Fukuoka Prefecture a prefecture where everyone can work and demonstrate their talents regardless of the age, gender, or disability.
 To improve citizens’ lives, we will enhance their health through sports to extend their healthy lifespans. We will also protect human rights and strive for gender equality. In addition, we will make serious efforts to facilitate women’s active participation in various areas.
 To enable citizens to have and raise children, we will provide various forms of support according to stages of life, including finding a partner, getting married, and having and raising children. For child-raising in particular, we will provide child-rearing women and single-parent families with especially thorough support in a wide range of forms according to the generation or circumstances.
 In addition to these initiatives, we will tackle three new challenges.
 The first challenge is fostering next-generation leaders of various fields in the future of Fukuoka  Prefecture. We will cultivate talented individuals who will play a leading role in regional invigoration, industrial and economic development, and the development and promotion of sports, culture and arts. We will help young people to challenge themselves to become aware of and develop their own potential through various experiences in order to make a giant leap.
 Our second challenge is increasing the global presence and worldwide recognition of Fukuoka Prefecture.  Fukuoka Prefecture has distinct advantages, including infrastructure, human resources, and relatively close distances to other Asian countries. Leveraging these advantages, we will make Fukuoka Prefecture a  Japanese prefecture that people in Japan and around the world select as a location of their corporate operations, as a place for migration, as a tourist destination, or as the place of origin of agricultural and other products for consumption or use.
 Our third challenge is promoting the One Health approach. Since most new infectious diseases originate from animals, combatting such diseases necessitates collaboration between medical and veterinary professionals. The One Health approach aims to protect human health, animal health, and environmental health in an integrated way, and is related to many of the United Nation’s Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). I hope to make Fukuoka Prefecture a global pioneer in the One Health approach.
 Tackling and overcoming these challenges requires the Fukuoka Prefectural Government itself to be energetic and aggressive and to fully utilize the experiences and capabilities of its staff.  In the prefectural government, we will create a more open atmosphere that will encourage staff to actively put forward various ideas and proposals and have positive discussions with each other.
 I hope that the Fukuoka Prefectural Assembly members and I, both having been elected under the dual representation system, will collaborate based on mutual trust and with a healthy tension in order to advance the administration of the prefecture. I will always take a constructive direction by listening to their opinions that deserve careful attention, and having necessary discussions with them.
 Furthermore, I will also closely collaborate with the municipalities as the local governments closest to citizens and most accessible to their opinions. Close cooperation and dialogues between the Fukuoka Prefectural Government and all municipalities in the prefecture, including the Kitakyushu City Government and the Fukuoka City Government, will double or triple the power of Team Fukuoka. Through such cooperation and dialogues, we will work on the administration of Fukuoka for the sake of all citizens.
 I believe that Kyushu will lead Japan and its development in the future. I hope to work together with prefectural government staff, the municipalities, the assembly members, and citizens to open the door to a bright future of Fukuoka Prefecture, enabling it to develop energetically and make a giant leap in a way suiting its role as the leading prefecture of Kyushu. I thank you in advance for your cooperation.

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