The presentation of Oikawa and Akahane
The Second Hometown Project and the Utilization of the Comprehensive Livelihood Support Application
They proposed that municipalities such as cities and prefectures establish a mutually beneficial relationship by forming one-to-one agreements with foreign municipalities and accept foreign labor from partner countries. Also, they promoted the "second hometown project" which aims to create an environment, in which foreign labor would want to try working and living, as well as the "comprehensive livelihood support application," which will be run by partnerships between public and private sectors to develop the environment for foreigners who come to Japan for participating in the project. For Japan, they particularly target the municipalities of mountainous regions.
They elaborated on the benefits of the second hometown project; for example, when each municipality receives foreign labor from its unique partner country, the Japanese municipalities will be able to flexibly develop policies for accepting foreigners according to the circumstances associated with each partner country, encourage settlement and finding employment within the municipality, and prevent people from flowing out to urban areas. They define a second hometown as the place where one can feel safe to live and belong.
As for the comprehensive livelihood support application, they aim to contribute to alleviating the labor shortage problem by building a matching feature to connect foreign labor with local small to medium enterprises. Further, when the administrative authorities operate the application, it will be possible to share a variety of information regarding foreign workers and acceptance of those workers.
Moreover, partner countries will encourage their citizens to seek employment and live in municipalities in Japan for a certain period of time while Japan will concretely define the length of "certain period of time" at the stage of developing legislation by considering issues surrounding the long-term residency of foreigners.
During the presentation, Akahane (on the left) gave the speech while Oikawa operated the slides and
answered the judges' questions