Quantcast
pork barrel

Indebted Japanese city puts its name on sale



TOKYO – A debt-ridden Japanese city is offering to rename itself after the highest bidder, an official said Thursday.

The city in the western prefecture of Osaka — currently called Izumisano — owes its creditors well over 100 billion yen ($1.25 billion), the official said, adding the presence of nearby Kansai International Airport was partly to blame.

“The city spent a lot of money building roads and other infrastructure because the airport was built in this relatively remote place,” he said on condition of anonymity.

“The mayor believes the city government needs to seek new ways to make profit.”

Izumisano, which is known mainly for its towel-making industry and proximity to the airport, is looking for a sponsor prepared to stump up at least a billion yen.

Suitors will also need to sign a ten-year contract affirming a connection with the city, for example by moving their headquarters there.

Officials originally announced the plan in June but had no takers, the official said, adding so far the bulk of inquiries had been from some of the city’s 103,000 residents annoyed about the plan.

“They say the name of the city has its history and is not something you can sell or buy.”

Many of Japan’s regional governments are saddled with enormous debts after decades of infrastructure projects of sometimes dubious value.

A rapidly ageing society means an increasing number of pensioners need to be supported by a dwindling workforce and a shrinking tax base.

The far-northern city of Yubari was declared bankrupt in 2007 with debts of 63.2 billion yen.

Bids for a new name for Izumisano will be accepted until November 30, the official said.


Follow Us




Recent Stories:

Complete stories on our Digital Edition newsstand for tablets, netbooks and mobile phones; 14-issue free trial. About to step out? Get breaking alerts on your mobile.phone. Text ON INQ BREAKING to 4467, for Globe, Smart and Sun subscribers in the Philippines.

Tags: indebted city , Japan , News , world


  • Horst Manure

    Every 70- 80 years there has been a depression the last one was in 1930, this is a sign it is underway and will only get worse for many years.



Copyright © 2014, .
To subscribe to the Philippine Daily Inquirer newspaper in the Philippines, call +63 2 896-6000 for Metro Manila and Metro Cebu or email your subscription request here.
Factual errors? Contact the Philippine Daily Inquirer's day desk. Believe this article violates journalistic ethics? Contact the Inquirer's Reader's Advocate. Or write The Readers' Advocate:
c/o Philippine Daily Inquirer Chino Roces Avenue corner Yague and Mascardo Streets, Makati City, Metro Manila, Philippines Or fax nos. +63 2 8974793 to 94
Advertisement
Advertisement
Marketplace
Advertisement