Efforts by Hiroshima Prefecture, City, and Chamber of Commerce ultimately bear fruit as Hiroshima selected to host G7 summit

Preparations to welcome summit to Hiroshima in full swing

by Yo Kono, Staff Writer

After Hiroshima City was selected on May 23 to host the 2023 G7 summit meeting (attended by the Group of Seven industrialized nations), leaders of the Hiroshima Prefectural and City governments and Hiroshima Chamber of Commerce and Industry welcomed the decision at a news conference held in Hiroshima’s Naka Ward on the same day. Collaborators in the efforts to host the summit, the three leaders remarked at their delight in the decision and announced preparations to ensure the summit serves as an opportunity for leaders of nuclear-weapon and other nations to take action toward the elimination of nuclear weapons and achievement of international peace.

“I’m extremely happy that our wish has become a reality,” said Hiroshima Mayor Kazumi Matsui, expressing his pleasure at the start of the press conference. Hiroshima Prefectural Governor Hidehiko Yuzaki broke into a smile as he remarked, “I welcome the decision from the bottom of my heart.”

The three leaders first announced their aim to invite the summit to Hiroshima in November of last year and submitted a proposal to the Japan Ministry of Foreign Affairs in December. That proposal listed six facilities as potential accommodation sites, including the Grand Prince Hotel Hiroshima, located in the city’s Minami Ward, which was to serve as the main venue for the event. In January this year, a council to promote the effort to invite the summit meeting to Hiroshima was formed of eight private- and public-sector organizations, in an attempt to show Hiroshima’s willingness to host the summit.

With Russia’s invasion of Ukraine in February earlier this year and its threat to use nuclear weapons, people involved in the effort to invite the meeting to Hiroshima become increasingly aware of the significance of holding the G7 summit in the A-bombed city. Mayor Matsui expressed his hope that “the world situation will move in a positive direction” when the G7 leaders ultimately come into contact with the reality of the threat of nuclear weapons through their visit to Hiroshima. Koji Ikeda, chairman of the Hiroshima Chamber of Commerce and Industry, said, “Without lasting peace, there can be no economic development.”

Soon, the three Hiroshima leaders will be involved in the full-scale launch of preparations for hosting the summit. Governor Yuzaki said he would prepare for the summit by learning how the Mie Prefectural government went about handling the 2016 G7 Ise-Shima Summit.

(Originally published on May 24, 2022)