Cabinet Ministers Ishiba and Shimajiri visit Kumejima
On May 1, 2016 Minister of State for the National Strategic Special Zones Shigeru Ishiba and Minister of State for Okinawa and Northern Territories Affairs Aiko Shimajiri visited the Okinawa Deep Seawater Research Center and related deep seawater industries on Kumejima. While Minister Shimajiri has visited Kumejima several times prior to her elevation to Cabinet level, it is the first time both ministers have visited in their current roles. After learning about the Kumejima Model at the ODRC, the ministers visited the Okinawa Ocean Thermal Energy Conversion (OTEC) Facility, as well as local industries including Point Pyuru Cosmetics, Kumejima Sea Grape Aquaculture, GO Farm Oyster Research, and the Kumejima Cooperative Kuruma PrawnFarm. The Ministers were also the 5000th visitor since the OTEC facilities opening in 2013. The OTEC facility and other companies have taken advantage of existing deep seawater resources to create economically significant industries for Kumejima, however, they all are constrained by the limited capacity of the existing pipeline.