TOKYO: WAKAMIYA Kenji, minister for the 2025 World Expo in Osaka, has promised to do his “utmost” to get as many countries and organizations as possible to participate in the event.
“The novel coronavirus pandemic has caused a delay in our invitation activities,” Wakamiya said in a recent media interview. “We’ll move quickly and do our utmost.”
Asked about his impression of world expositions, Wakamiya said he clearly remembers how he felt moved when he visited the 1970 World Expo in Suita, Osaka Prefecture.
The 2025 Expo “is expected to take place in an environment where the coronavirus is under control,” he said. “I expect that countries around the world will propose various new technologies and lifestyles.”
The Osaka Expo is forecast to draw 28 million visitors, Wakamiya said, adding that Japan will use the opportunity to “make the attractions of its history, traditions and culture known more widely.”
He also called for promoting the use of teleworking to ease the overconcentration of business and population in Tokyo.
“Reducing the gaps between urban and nonurban areas will lead to regional revitalization,” said Wakamiya, also minister to deal with problems posed to regional society from depopulation and aging.
The use of autonomous vehicles to transport elderly people to and from care facilities, the introduction of automated goods delivery services and the spread of teleworking will be keys to solving such problems, according to Wakamiya.