"The World and Japan" Database (Project Leader: TANAKA Akihiko)
Database of Japanese Politics and International Relations
National Graduate Institute for Policy Studies (GRIPS); Institute for Advanced Studies on Asia (IASA), The University of Tokyo

[Title] Message by Prime Minister Shinzo Abe on the Inscription of "The Sites of Japan's Meiji Industrial Revolution: Iron and Steel, Shipbuilding and Coal Mining" on UNESCO's World Heritage List

[Date] July 5, 2015
[Source] Prime Minister of Japan and His Cabinet
[Notes] Provisional Translation
[Full text]

I am truly pleased by the decision to inscribe on the World Heritage List "The Sites of Japan's Meiji Industrial Revolution: Iron and Steel, Shipbuilding and Coal Mining."

"The Sites of Japan's Meiji Industrial Revolution" tell the story of Japan's efforts to become an industrial nation from the end of the Edo Period to the Meiji Period (from the 1850s through 1910), during which time Japan sought to incorporate Western technologies, foster the necessary human resources on its own, and achieve industrialization.

Japan's ability to combine technology from abroad with its own traditional techniques and achieve industrialization in just over 50 years is a feat that has rarely been seen anywhere in the world. This endeavor holds universal value and is worthy of being the common heritage of mankind.

I would like to express my deep respect to the local communities who have worked hard to preserve and support the 23 properties in 11 cities in 8 prefectures, as well as the corporations that have endeavored to maintain and preserve this industrial heritage, even while operating the sites for over 100 years.

Today I would like to express anew my determination to preserve and pass on to the next generation these wonderful heritage sites, which represent the starting point of Japan's development into a major manufacturing nation and the tremendous accomplishments of our ancestors.

Sunday, July 5, 2015

Shinzo Abe, Prime Minister of Japan