Japanese broadcasters boost content aimed at potential tourists


Japanese broadcasters whose programs are shown overseas are stepping up content aimed at potential tourists.

Sky Perfect JSAT Corp. is slated to expand its overseas service area to 22 nations by fiscal 2020. It currently serves only four.

NHK gave a 30 percent boost to its budget in fiscal 2015 for programs broadcast internationally. They can be seen in around 150 nations worldwide.

“Video images have a strong appeal,” Japan Tourism Agency Commissioner Akihiko Tamura said. He expressed hope for a positive impact from the broadcasters’ moves.

Through Wakuwaku Japan Corp., a subsidiary set up with investment from the public-private Cool Japan Fund Inc., Sky Perfect operates local-language channels in four Southeast Asian countries. The programs provide not only content translated from Japanese versions, but also Japanese travel information aimed at potential visitors.

“Shiki-oriori,” a sightseeing program that began in November 2014 in Indonesia and aired for about six months, was popular among people looking to travel to Japan.

It apparently had immediate impact: An official of a major Japanese travel agency said monthly sales at the firm’s Indonesia branch surged six times the level of the year before.