From ANN –
Japan Plans 147M Yen to Spread Anime, Manga in Europe The Japanese government has decided on December 21 and 22 to allocate 147 million yen (about US$1.3 million) to spread anime, manga, and other elements of Japanese popular culture in Eastern Europe. The decision was made during cabinet-level discussions between Finance Minister Fukushiro Nukuaga and the other ministers on the 2008 budget. Although the “Program to Spread Japanese Culture” will ostensibly send 30 people to teach Japanese in Hungary and three other countries, its main purpose is to introduce Japanese popular culture. Anime and manga are specifically named as the aspects of Japanese culture that the program will introduce.
Ray’s take: hmm…I’m torn between calling this “Desperate effort to make Japan better-known in more remote regions” and “show them the power of moe”. Last time the Russians were converted to Haruhiism, this time the 30 brave Japanese kamikaze men and women shall prevail! Go forth! And make their men obsessed with moe, and their females obsessed with yaoi! Come to us! And together, we can conquer the non-Otaku population! Mwa ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha!
Editor’s note: for the follow up news see here.