National

Japan plans event to showcase cultural appeal for Olympics visitors

Kyodo

With the eyes of the world set to be on the country when it hosts the Olympics and Paralympics in 2020, the government is spearheading a plan to launch Japan Exposition — a plethora of exhibits and public performances throughout the nation showcasing Japanese culture.

The government is hoping it will persuade tourists to travel throughout the country, and that foreign interest in Japan will continue even after the Tokyo Games.

Preparations for the exposition will be formally launched Sunday, a year before its planned opening, with a ceremony at the National Theatre in Tokyo.

Total costs for the event have yet to be determined, but the government has set aside around ¥3.5 billion for relevant expenses under the initial budget plan for fiscal 2019.

The Japan Exposition is part of the government’s plan to promote Japanese culture overseas. It was held in France in 2018 and is also set to be launched in the United States and Southeast Asia in 2019.

The government has set up a council headed by Prime Minister Shinzo Abe to promote the event. The project will be overseen by the Cultural Affairs Agency.

Exhibits featuring national treasures and important cultural assets are planned in cities including Tokyo and Kyoto. There will be performances by individuals designated by the country as “living national treasures” in the traditional arts of kabuki, noh and kyogen.

The exhibition will showcase manga and anime that are popular overseas, Japanese cuisine, and performing folk art from areas devastated by the massive Great East Japan Earthquake in March 2011.

National monuments currently undergoing renovations will also be accessible, enabling visitors to see the craftsmen’s skills. The government will also promote national parks in an effort to foster tourists’ curiosity about rural areas of the country.

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