Miyagi Prefectural Government
Address: 3-8-1 Honcho, Aoba-ku, Sendai City, Miyagi Prefecture 980-8570 Japan
The Miyagi Prefectural Government consists of 8 departments with 96 divisions just in the main office, 7 regional offices (Sendai, Sennan, Osaki, Tome, Kurihara, Ishinomaki and Kesennuma), and offices outside the prefecture including Tokyo and Osaka and offices overseas including Seoul (Korea) and Dalian (China).
As of April 1, 2015, there is 7,595 government staff.
Miyagi Prefecture concluded the sister-state agreement with the State of Delaware, United States in 1997, and both states continue to carry out exchanges and developing this relationship. 2017 marks the 20th anniversary of the sister-state relationship.
Miyagi Prefecture is blessed with an abundance of natural beauty and numerous historic sites. Its capital, Sendai, boasts a population of over a million people and is filled with vitality and passion.
Miyagi’s history goes back all the way to 1,200 years ago when Tagajo, a region in Miyagi, played a significant role as one of the main centers of government in northern Japan in the Heian Period. During that same period, many of the faithful came to the region to gather at Shiogama Shrine. It was 400 years ago when Miyagi’s foundation was built by the famous feudal lord, Date Masamune.
The one-eyed warlord cast his ambitious gaze far beyond the boundaries of Miyagi
While several warlords fought for supremacy during the 16th century in Japan, there was one who reigned supreme in the Ou region (present Tohoku region), Date Masamune (1567-1636) who came to dominate the south Ou region at the age of 23. After Tokugawa Ieyasu’s unification of Japan, Masamune ruled a vast area of northern Japan, including Miyagi, and founded the Sendai Domain. He was well known as the “One-Eyed Dragon” due to his gallantry and the loss of sight in his right eye when he was a child. Masamune’s ambition never disappeared even when he grew old. In 1613, he dispatched the Keicho Envoy led by Hasekura Tsunenaga (1570-1621), crossing the Pacific Ocean and Mexico before reaching Europe to seek out trading opportunities. The envoy visited various regions of Europe conveying Masamune’s message to audiences of such importance including Phillip III of Spain and Pope Paul V. However, despite their efforts, no trade agreements were reached and only the objects Tsunenaga brought back from his travels remain as a symbol of Masamune’s ambition to trade with foreign countries.
The replica of the Keicho envoy’s ship, Sant Juan Bautista, is located in Ishinomaki City, which was the departure point for Hasekura Tsunenaga and his envoy to Europe.
Today, Miyagi continues to flourish with a population of approximately 2.33 million (as of Feb. 1, 2017) and 35 municipalities (14 cities, 20 towns and 1 village). The capital of Miyagi, Sendai City, has a population of approximately 1.08 million (as of Mar. 1, 2017). Each area of the prefecture offers its own history and culture and is committed to developing a unique character based on these traits. Miyagi is known for the variety of its features, such as Matsushima – one of three most scenic spots in Japan – and the sea, mountains, plains and rural and urban areas. Each area is blessed with a wonderful, natural environment in harmony with modern features.
Miyagi Prefecture is located in the Tohoku (northeastern) region of Japan and has a vast transportation network, including the airport, sea ports, expressways and railways.
Miyagi is conveniently located only 1-1/2 hours by bullet train from Tokyo, Japan’s capital and is connected to Narita International Airport and other major airports throughout Japan by Sendai International Airport. International routes at Sendai Airport connect Miyagi to various global destinations including Taipei, Seoul, Shanghai and Guam.
Governor: Yoshihiro Murai
Date of Birth: August 20, 1960
Born in Osaka Prefecture in 1960
After graduating from the National Defense Academy (science and engineering major) in 1984, Yoshihiro Murai entered the Japan Ground Self-Defense Force (JGSDF). He was assigned to the Japan Ground Self-Defense Force North-Eastern Army Aviation Group as a helicopter pilot that year, and in 1991 he was assigned to the Recruit Division of the Self-Defense Forces Miyagi Regional Liaison Office. Murai retired from the JGSDF (rank: Captain) in 1992.
In the same year, Murai enrolled in the Matsushita Institute of Government and Management and upon finishing his studies, he was elected as member of the Miyagi Prefectural Assembly in 1995. Murai was elected to three terms, and in 2005 he was elected as governor of Miyagi Prefecture. In 2013, he was elected to a third term as governor.
Promoting private investment in Miyagi Prefecture
PRIVATIZATION OF SENDAI INTERNATIONAL AIRPORT IN JULY 2016
Sendai International Airport became the first regional airport in Japan operated by the national government to be privatized in 2016. Previously, the airport’s runway was operated by the national government and the airport building and cargo terminal were operated by a third sector. With the privatization of the airport, the private sector now oversees the operations of the entire airport including the runway and there are great expectations for this style of management to revitalize the airport and improve efficiency.
PRIVATIZATION PLAN OF WATERWORKS, SEWERAGE AND INDUSTRIAL WATERWORKS
There are plans to integrate the waterworks, sewerage and industrial waterworks currently managed by Miyagi Prefecture. After integrating these three projects, the private sector will become responsible for maintenance and facility renovation and Miyagi Prefecture will be responsible for price setting. This framework will become the first public-private sector partnership in Japan, and the goal is to implement this plan in fiscal year 2020.
ATTRACTING COMPANIES TO MIYAGI
Miyagi Prefecture is a leading producer of rice in Japan and is home to Sendai City, which is the largest city in the Tohoku Region. The industries in this region have traditionally been the primary and tertiary sectors. Since Governor Yoshihiro Murai took office, Miyagi Prefecture has made many efforts to invite the secondary sector in order to carry out economic reform. As a result, companies such as Japan’s largest automobile manufacturer Toyota Motor Corporation and Tokyo Electron, one of the world’s major producers of semiconductor equipment, have established new factories in the prefecture.