Population (Prefectural): 5.1 million
GDP (Prefectural): 18.9 trillion yen
Candidate Site: Undetermined
Main IR Assets: Fukuoka is the most cosmopolitan city and the capital of the most populous prefecture on Kyushu island with easy access to Honshu via the Shinkansen and by airports.
Key Proponent: Junior Chamber International Fukuoka
Family Name: Takashima
Given Name: Soichiro
Role: Mayor of Fukuoka City
IR Stance: Opponent
Profile: Originally from Oita, Takashima had a career as a television announcer before his first election as mayor, with the support of conservative political parties, in 2010. At that time he was the youngest elected mayor in Fukuoka's history.
Fukuoka Mayor Soichiro Takashima has quickly responded to the Junior Chamber International Fukuoka’s proposal for an IR bid from his city. The answer was clear—“not at this time.”
Junior Chamber International Fukuoka is making a strong push for Fukuoka city, the most populous municipality on the island of Kyushu, to join the IR race, and they will soon be formally petitioning the local government and business leaders to join this campaign.
Although the Nagasaki Prefectural Government has been trying to consolidate “All-Kyushu” support for its IR bid, alternatives to the Huis Ten Bosch site in Sasebo city continue to be discussed.
Fukuoka police arrested an unemployed man last week on suspicion that he was helping to run an illegal internet gambling ring based out of a single-room apartment in Hakata Ward.
Fukuoka prefectural police conducted simultaneous raids on two related illegal gambling shops on February 1, including a roulette parlor named “Hope” in the Nakasu entertainment district. A total of ten people were arrested.