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December 3, 2013

Asia: Japan leverages its innovative industries for tourism

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Japan is banking on its world-class manufacturing and agricultural sectors to draw more tourists under a new industrial tourism programme. Backed by the Japan External Trade Organization (JETRO), it will target travel agencies and foreign companies interested in how Japanese businesses work.

Under the Industrial Tourism: Come See What Makes Japan Tick programme launched alongside its website on November 20, a range of industrial tourism options are available across 24 destinations in Japan.

This includes trips to factories of household names such as Asahi and Kirin Beer in Hokkaido, Kikkoman Corporation in Chiba and Nissan Motor in Yokohama as well as museums like Kawasaki Good Times World in Kobe where automobile enthusiasts can get up close to Kawasaki vehicles or Noritake Gardens in Nagoya which allows visitors to paint on their own china.

Speaking to TTG Asia e-Daily at the Visit Japan Travel Mart in Yokohama last week, Osamu Hisaki, creative industries planning division, creative industries promotion department of JETRO, said it is the first time JETRO is venturing into tourism.

“(In June), tourism was designated as a major field to work on for the Japanese economy. Based on this trend, JETRO prepared an action plan together with the Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry; Ministry of Land, Infrastructure, Transport; and Tourism and Japan National Tourism Organization (JNTO),” he explained.

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