FUTENMA RELOCATION PLODDING ALONG

Created: 9/1/2000

OCR scan of the original document, errors are possible

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SUBJECT: Futenma Relocation Plodding Along

1. Administration, Okinawan prefectural, and local municipal officials last month began deliberating specific recomioendations for relocating Marine Corps Air Station Futenma, but US diplomats say they have yet to address the major impediments.

Okinawan Governor Inamine and Nago Mayor Kishimoto-whose district will host theyear time limit on US access to the replacement facility, prompting the local press to speculate that they will not cooperate otherwise.

Foreign Minister Kono will raise the time limit with senior US loaders at the two-plus-two meeting, accordingovernment spokesman, though we do not know how strongly he will pursue the matter. [

2. Competing concepts for the type and locationew facility will make the decision even more difficult. At least three industrial consortiums-each advocating different construction methods-aro vying for contracts and lobbying national and local leaders, who are divided on the issue.

The Okinawan Prefectural Government continues toand-based, joint-use facility near Camp Schwab that would benefit local construction firms and easily convertommercial airport. Mayor Kishimotoess intrusive sea-based facility or coastal landfill to address local concerns about safety and pollution.

ositive note, the councils studying the move have adoptedrojects worthillion that are incentives for local cooperation on bases relocation. They will be targeted in the current fiscal year to municipalities that will host tho new base, according to press reports, including a

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SUBJECT: Futema Relocation Plodding Along

plan to promote information-technology-related businesses and othor infrastructure development projects on the east coast of Okinawa.

3. Officials are working to ensure transparency by holding open meetings and releasing committee reports.

Japanese officials have told US diplomats that they intend to finish consultations as soon as possible, but they will probably not issue formal recommendations until sometime near the unofficial1 deadline.

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