15th plenary session of the Congress – 27-29 May 2008
Shogo Arai: “Local-to-local communications help discover diversities of life, cultures, history and people”
28.05.2008 - “There are no such flight destinations as ‘to France’ or ‘to Japan’, but ‘to Strasbourg’ or to ‘Nara’,” stressed today Shogo Arai, Governor of Japan’s Nara prefecture, in his statement before the Congress. Modern globalization trends, however, created a problem for the independence of local authorities in Japan which have to become more competitive without proper redistribution of financial resources and regulatory powers to the local level.
“The way to find a right balance between globalization and independence of local authorities is our crucial problem, redistribution of responsibilities between national and local governments being a political battle against the background of severe competition among regions,” he said. At the same time, direct communications and flows of people between regions are really productive and useful, added Governor Arai.