Japan’s Cabinet has approved a basic policy for the Ainu ethnic minority, including the establishment of a subsidy program to promote Ainu culture.
Cabinet ministers made the decision on Friday after a law recognizing the Ainu as an indigenous people of Japan was enacted earlier this year. The Ainu mainly live in Hokkaido, northern Japan.
The policy stipulates cooperation between the central government and local municipalities to help the Ainu preserve their cultural traditions, such as gathering wood in state-owned forests and catching salmon in local rivers.
The policy also stipulates the establishment of a subsidy program for regional revitalization aimed at helping local authorities to implement projects to promote Ainu culture.
It sets a goal of attracting one million visitors per year to the National Ainu Museum and Park that is planned to open in Hokkaido in April next year. It is hoped that this facility will encourage the revival and development of Ainu culture.