Chiba Governor Wants to Restart Anime Museum Plans

posted on by Sarah Nelkin
Former Prime Minister Tarō Asō originally proposed plans for 'National Media Arts Center' in 2009

Chiba Prefecture governor Kensaku Morita revealed at a rally for the upcoming March gubernatorial election that he wants to restart the plans for the anime museum that had previously been proposed by former Prime Minister Tarō Asō.

Morita noted during his speech that last June he had visited Germany and that "everyone was dressed up as geisha and anime characters." He added that when he saw the German youths cosplaying as Sailor Moon characters he "knew that the only method of getting attention from abroad was from anime."

The original anime museum, which was tentatively named the National Media Arts Center, was a part of Aso's larger proposal in 2009 to use his country's "soft power" in anime, manga, and similar areas of culture to create jobs and reverse the economic downturn.

The Liberal Democratic Party had proposed earmarks in the 2009 budget to fund the center's construction. However, Yukio Hatoyama of the opposition Democratic Party of Japan (DPJ) had criticized the earmarks, describing the planned center as a "national manga kissaten (café)" and asserted that Asō was trying to create his own bureaucracy for his interests.

In June 2009, a project team established to end useless spending in the Japanese government decided to call for the cancellation of the planned 11.7-billion-yen (about US$126 million) center because they said it was "unnecessary."

Source: Tokyo Sports

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