Quake Drama Hits Japan: This Week in Osaka April 12th to 19th 2023

Each week, here at Osaka.com, we bring you a selection of some of the top stories about Osaka making the local and national news here in Japan. Sometimes it’s serious, sometimes it’s funny, but it’s always direct to you, from Osaka.

Here’s a look at some of the stories hitting the headlines in Osaka this week.

Quake Rattles Western Japan

Osaka was spared the worst of Tuesday’s West Japan earthquake.

Residents in Osaka and surrounding areas had a scary, shaky experience on Wednesday evening. A magnitude 6.6 earthquake rattled Japan at 11.15pm local time. Residents in Osaka City certainly felt a jolt. Thankfully, no one in Osaka Prefecture was injured. The southern areas of Oita and Ehime recorded minor injuries. At time of writing there were no recorded fatalities. Two people in Ehime were seriously injured. Osaka City officials praised local residents for their response and also thanked the emergency services for their readiness to assist.

Despite a history of seismic turbulence, most recently the New Years Day earthquake in The Noto Peninsula, Ishikawa Prefecture, Japan is widely regarded as one of the best-prepared nations on Earth to confront natural disasters. A spokesperson for Osaka City’s local government said: “Unfortunately earthquakes are an inevitable part of life in Japan. However, as a government we devote huge resources every year to disaster preparation and rescue services. It is a huge credit to the people of Osaka that no-one was injured in this week’s quake.

Osaka to Benefit from Japan AI Growth

Japan has long been a leader in tech innovation.

The continuing surge in global adoption of AI technologies continues to offer new benefits for Osaka City. The latest in a series of new investments in the AI field was announced this week. US IT giant Oracle Corporation announced a new investment plan for their Tokyo and Osaka operations on Thursday. The new round of investment will see the company make investments totaling 8 billion US dollars in their Japan operations over the next ten years. A significant portion of these financial resources will find their way to Osaka.


Oracle’s data centers in Osaka currently focus on the development of AI driven graphical solutions for businesses. Japanese government sources also expressed hope that the new venture will also help them to combat data leakage issues in Japan’s business infrastructure.

Various analysts have expressed growing concern in recent times regarding the problem of sensitive data leaking to hostile forces outside Japan. With Oracle’s help, the government believes they can limit these data breaches and perhaps even eliminate them entirely in the medium to long term.

Expo Pavilion Cut Harms Confidence in Japan

Osaka’s Expo is still set for next April.

In yet another PR own goal for the struggling Osaka Expo 2025, organizers announced this week that the number of national pavilions on show has been cut by one third.

The number of participating nations who will have their own pavilion at the event, due to kick off next April, has been revised down to 40. Originally, organizers said that around 60 participant nations would prepare their own pavilions. However, Osaka mayor Hirofumi Yoshimura confirmed this week that this will no longer happen.

The Osaka Expo 2025 has been beset by cost-overruns, controversy and allegations of wasteful spending. Despite all this however, the government and their business backers maintain that the event will go ahead as planned and will be a resounding success. Osaka’s populous has yet to be convinced of this however.

And Finally

Tigers players celebrate winning last year’s Japan national championship.

Baseball champions, the Hanshin Tigers notched a crucial win over one of their biggest rivals on Thursday evening. The Tigers overcame Tokyo’s Yomiuri Giants by 2 to 1. The win gives the Tigers a much needed boost after an indifferent start to the season.

Last year the Hanshin Tigers won the national championship for the first time since 1985, sparking wild celebrations across Osaka and beyond.

That’s all for now but be sure to check back again same time next week for another round of this week in Osaka!


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