Morioka Times, Newspaper in Iwate Pref., to Close at the End of March Due to Declining Circulation

The Yomiuri Shimbun

The Morioka Times, a regional newspaper based in Morioka, the capital of Iwate Prefecture, will cease publication at the end of March. The announcement was made in the Tuesday issue of the paper.

“We are sorry for our readers, but we had to make this painful decision,” Morioka Times President Yuko Miyano said on the day. “We hope you will support us until the end.”

Mainly distributed in Morioka and the seven surrounding municipalities of Takizawa, Hachimantai, Shizukuishi, Yahaba, Shiwa, Iwate and Kuzumaki, the newspaper carries local news. The company does not make public its circulation numbers.

Fewer people have been buying the Morioka Times in recent years, making it difficult to stay afloat. The company, which has 13 employees, is scheduled to be liquidated at the end of March. But the Nikkan Iwate Kensetsu Kogyo Shimbun, a paper in the same group, will continue publication.

The Morioka Times was launched in an eight-page tabloid format by the Nikkan Iwate Kensetsu Kogyo Shimbun in October 1969. It expanded into a broadsheet with the same number of pages in 1990.