• Kyodo

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More than 70 percent of infrastructure such as ports and airports have not had regular inspections due partly to a lack of funding and manpower, according to a study by the internal affairs ministry.

That ministry urged the infrastructure ministry to properly inspect these facilities as required by law and conduct repairs deemed necessary in the inspections. The internal affairs ministry surveyed port, airport and river infrastructure to see if they are properly maintained for safety and cost efficiency.

Of the 18 ports surveyed, 13 have not been inspected regularly. Five other port facilities, including wharves and breakwaters, were checked and 80 spots have been found to need repairs, but only 51 have been fixed, according to the ministry.

Regular inspections were not conducted at the required rate at five of the nine airports surveyed. There were 80 cases of abnormal surface inclines on runways at seven airports inspected. None has been dealt with.

Some facility managers said they haven’t conducted regular checks because there isn’t enough personnel with the sufficient expertise or they have not encountered problems in daily operations.

The infrastructure ministry has estimated that ¥190 trillion will be needed to maintain or renew aging infrastructure between fiscal 2011 and 2060.

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