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The online magazine HIGHLIGHTING JAPAN

June 2021




    The Host Town Initiative is an initiative to promote exchange between citizens of Japan and the people of other countries and regions participating in the Tokyo 2020 Olympic and Paralympic Games to be held from July to September this year. The Host Town Initiative involves communities not only supporting athletes in their preparation for the Games, but also promoting wide-ranging activities including cultural exchange, education, and even infrastructure development. In this month’s issue, we introduce the activities of some of the hundreds of Host Towns and counterpart countries and regions involved since the pioneering initiative was launched in 2016.



  • Host Town Initiative for Tokyo 2020

    An interview with Katsuno Mie, Director General for Planning and Promotion, Secretariat of the Headquarters for the Tokyo 2020 Olympic and Paralympic Games of the Cabinet Secretariat

  • ‘ARIGATO’ Host Towns Give Thanks for Support

    Local governments in three prefectures affected by the Great East Japan Earthquake in March 2011 have been interacting with people from countries and regions from which they received support and expressing their gratitude.

  • How Host Towns Are Interacting with Paralympians

    The cities of Kanazawa in Ishikawa Prefecture and Odate in Akita Prefecture are interacting with Paralympians.

  • Omotenashi with “GAP Foods”

    Students of agricultural high schools across Japan have been taking on the challenge of providing omotenashi (hospitality) with foods certified as conforming to Good Agricultural Practices (GAP).

  • Murayama City and Bulgaria—Connected by Roses

    Murayama City in Yamagata Prefecture is the Host Town for the Bulgarian rhythmic gymnastics team. At the “Host Town Summit 2019,” the City received three awards for its Host Town activities.

  • Host Town High School Students Building Links with Germany

    High school students from five cities registered as Host Towns have created proposals for the realization through sports of a harmonious and inclusive society and the revitalization of local communities.

  • Cultural Exchange with a Host Town through Trinidad and Tobago’s National Instrument

    Cultural exchange between Nakatosa Town in Kochi Prefecture and the Republic of Trinidad and Tobago is progressing via the Internet.

  • International Cooperation through Host Towns

    Introducing three Host Towns that are engaged in initiatives such as improving the living environment in their counterpart country and supporting athletes’ training and daily lives.




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