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Flower-growers in Aichi Prefecture have started campaigning to bring the International Garden and Horticulture Exposition, better known as the Flower Expo, to Aichi by around 2020.

Under the plan, the prefectural government, flower-related organizations and the local business community will work in unison toward a successful expo bid, aiming to promote not only the local gardening and landscaping but also its tourism and environmental industries. Aichi hosted the World Expo in 2005.

It would be the second flower expo in the country, following the 1990 Osaka Flower Expo.

The plan was first set out by gardening-related business organizations, including the Aichi Flower Growers Association, which approached the prefectural government and other local businesses in March.

During a board meeting in May, the Japan Agricultural Cooperative’s Aichi Chuo (JA Aichi) agreed to support the campaign to bring the flower expo to the prefecture.

Research on the bid is expected to begin following the petition that the industries will submit to the prefectural government and assembly in August.

Selecting the venue is one of the major issues, as hosting an exposition requires about 50 hectares.

The expo, which would increase both domestic and overseas tourism to the area, could be the prefecture’s next big project after the 10th Conference of the Parties to the Convention on Biological Diversity, or COP10, to be held in Aichi in October.

According to the Land, Infrastructure, Transport and Tourism Ministry, those who wish to host an exposition must apply to the Japan Landscape Contractors Association, which represents the International Association of Horticultural Producers (AIPH) in Japan.

A final decision on an event host will be made at the plenary assembly of AIPH after the presentations made by candidates.

Flower production in Aichi Prefecture accounts for 16 percent of the country’s total in terms of value. Aichi has been the nation’s largest flower producing area since 1962.

In 2008, production dropped by 14 percent from the previous year to ¥60.7 billion, but Aichi still ranked top.

Aichi Gov. Masaaki Kanda said: “I cannot comment about the plan as I haven’t been told about it officially yet. But this move might indicate that our community is seeking a business with which people can envision a bright future. I would like to listen to their request carefully.”

This section, appearing Saturdays, features topics and issues from the Chubu region covered by local daily Chunichi Shimbun. The original article was published July 24.

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