That means TaurosMr Mime and Kanghaskan could be caught in Japan for a limited time.

There’s been a lot of talk recently about using Pokémon Go to boost tourism in Japan’s disaster-struck areas, with officials from Fukushima, Miyagi and Iwate in the Tohoku region and Kumamoto Prefecture on the island of Kyushu, discussing ways to utilise features from the augmented reality game to assist with rebuilding efforts. While their proposals have centred on increasing Gyms and Pokéstops so visitors can battle and collect items at more tourist spots in the area, Miyagi Prefecture recently revealed a more ambitious plan to really bring crowds to their doorstep.

According to local media reports, Miyagi Prefecture recently secured 30 million yen (about US$290,000) in supplementary funding to use in conjunction with Pokémon Go as part of the Great East Japan Earthquake reconstruction policy measures in the area. The prefecture plans to set aside 15 million yen for publicity, pamphlets and television advertising to promote local Pokéstops, 10 million yen for special co-operative Pokémon Go events in October for Kumamoto and the three Tohoku locales, and 5 million yen for Niantic “system improvement” costs.

As part of this collaboration, it was revealed that Miyagi Prefecture has sent a proposal to Niantic, the game’s developers, to request that the world’s region exclusive Pokémon be made available in Japan’s disaster-affected areas for a set period. That would mean North America’s Tauros (pictured above), Australia’s Kanghaskan, and Europe’s Mr. Mime (below) could be caught without having to leave the country.

▼ Asia’s exclusive yellow-billed duck Pokémon, Farfetch’d, would obviously also be available.


If the request is approved, it’s likely that half the country, including visiting tourists, will be travelling to the disaster regions soon, which would be a massive win for revitalisation efforts and local morale. Let’s hope the proposal gets the tick of approval from Niantic so we can catch ’em all here in Japan and do it all for a good cause too!

Source: Livedoor News via Hachima Kikou
Featured image: Flickr/Eduardo Woo