World Business Conference for World Peace opens in Hiroshima

by Takamasa Kyoren, Staff Writer

The World Business Conference for World Peace, which explores ways to contribute to advancing peace in the world through business activities, opened in downtown Hiroshima on November 5. Hidehiko Yuzaki, the governor of Hiroshima Prefecture, stated his intention to appeal to the United Nations to set a goal of realizing a world without nuclear weapons by 2045, 100 years after the atomic bombings of Hiroshima and Nagasaki. He called on the participants to support this initiative.

In his opening remarks, Mr. Yuzaki said that current international conditions indicate that rather than moving forward with the goal of eliminating nuclear arms, the world is in fact heading in the opposite direction. He asked the participants for their assistance in realizing a world without nuclear weapons by 2045.

The United Nations has put forth Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), which it hopes to achieve by 2030. The Hiroshima prefectural government is planning to urge the U.N. to include the aim of achieving a world without nuclear weapons among its next goals, which will be adopted around 2030. SDGs are one theme of this conference, and Mr. Yuzaki called for support for the prefectural government’s plan.

In one of the sessions, a prefectural government official explained the SDGs of its Future City Plan, which stipulates that the prefectural government will seek action from the U.N. In order to help build the foundation for maintaining global peace, the prefectural government will promote three enterprises, including the creation of a network of businesses and organizations that contribute to peace-building.

Some 300 participants, including representatives of Japanese and overseas businesses and non-governmental organizations are taking part in the conference. This is the third such conference, which is sponsored by an executive committee composed of the Hiroshima prefectural government and other organizations. The keynote address was given by Jacques Attali, the first head of the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development. Before the conference closes on November 6, sessions will be held on such themes as advancing peace through the power of sports.

(Originally published on November 6, 2018)