Comments on: Living off the land in Okinawa How to make, save and spend money in Japan. Wed, 18 Feb 2015 03:29:48 +0000 hourly 1 By: Tony Mon, 13 Dec 2010 02:32:00 +0000 This is the standard excuse of Okinawa politicians, when you actually probe them into what specifically they are going to do with the land they don’t have a clue.
Take the sea reclamation project in Awase. When the government changed, Maehara the Minister, visited Okinawa and asked the Okinawa City council what they were going to do with the land when they had finished (bearing in mind they had already spent billions of yen creating land from the sea) cue, embarassed silence and comments of “we might do a hotel” or “we might xxx”, they basically had no formal plans or committments from developers to use that new land. They were effectively jealous of other towns for having a sea front tourist area and wanted the same without considering the location or if they could attract developers. Maehara closed the project down.
So it’s not lack of land, it’s lack of any kind of intelligent thought to improve what we have.
The tourist policy sucks, promotion of Okinawa outside Japan is dire, but that could be Okinawa’s salvation.
In summary, Okinawa politicians blame the bases and Americans because they don’t have any valid policies. It’s the one thing they can focus on. They do ignore the jobs of Okinawan’s on base as well as the support of the local economy. Not just rent, but ancillary businesses such as restaurants, cars, housing, entertainment, bars, ISPs, news & magazines etc.
Finally, no one ever mentions the cost of replacing the Americans should they leave, Okinawa is in a precarious position with daily incursions by Chinese submarines along the borders as it lies so close to Taiwan, China and Korea. Without the Americans here, common sense dictates that there would have to be a more sizable Japanese SDF in Okinawa. How much would that cost?

By: jdd Thu, 02 Dec 2010 11:11:22 +0000 Sure, in the southern part of the island, urbanization has grown right up to the previously isolated bases.

But from eastern Nago on north, there is literally [i]nothing[/i] there, and it’s not US control on that land that is holding development back. It’s just hicksville.

Developments south of that are there and economically in trouble–i.e., I doubt that they’d want more of the island opened to competing developments. They already have enough trouble staying out of the red.