Kobe

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Kobe

(kō`bā), city (1990 pop. 1,477,410), capital of Hyogo prefecture, S Honshu, Japan, on Osaka Bay. One of the leading Japanese ports, it is also a major industrial center and railway hub. It is part of a transportation network, which includes express trains and highways, that links it to OsakaOsaka
, city (1990 pop. 2,623,801), capital of Osaka prefecture, S Honshu, Japan, on Osaka Bay, at the mouth of the Yodo River. One of Japan's largest cities and principal industrial and commercial centers, Osaka is the focal point of a chain of industrial cities (called the
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, KyotoKyoto
, city (1990 pop. 1,461,140), capital of Kyoto prefecture, S Honshu, Japan, on the Kamo River. Yodo is its port. Kyoto is one of Japan's largest cities and an important cultural and spiritual center.
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, and NagoyaNagoya
, city (1990 pop. 2,154,793), capital of Aichi prefecture, central Honshu, Japan, on Ise Bay. A major port, transportation hub, and industrial center, it has iron- and steelworks, textile mills, aircraft factories, automotive works, and chemical, plastics, electronics,
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. It has shipbuilding yards, vehicle factories, iron and steel mills, sugar refineries, and chemical, rubber, and food-processing plants. A cultural center, Kobe has several colleges and universities and many temples and shrines. Since 1878 the city has included Hyogo (formerly Hiogo), an ancient port that was prominent during the Ashikaga period (14th–16th cent.) and regained importance after it was reopened to foreign trade in 1868. Kobe was heavily bombed during World War II but was rebuilt and enlarged, with much commercial building taking place on landfill in Osaka Bay. In Jan., 1995, Kobe suffered a devastating earthquake that killed more than 6,400 people. Much of the port was destroyed; total damages were estimated at over $100 billion.

Kobe

 

a city and port in Japan, in the south of Honshu Island, on Osaka Bay of the Inland Sea of Japan. Administrative center of the prefecture of Hyogo. Population, 1,289,000 (1970).

Kobe is a large industrial center in western Japan, in the heart of the Kansai economic region. The port handles 28 percent of the total export value of the country and 13 percent of the imports (industrial raw materials, such as raw cotton, petroleum, and rubber). Kobe’s economy is based primarily on imported raw materials. Industry accounts for 40 percent of the gross revenue of Kobe; 22.4 percent comes from commerce, 13.4 percent from transportation and communications, and 11 percent from the service sector. More than 70 percent of Kobe’s industrial production is heavy industry; the leading branches are metallurgy, construction of transportation equipment, including shipbuilding, and the chemical industry (in particular, the production of rubber goods). Kobe has great shipbuilding wharfs (just three of them produce 30 percent of the tonnage of ships built in Japan). Kobe also has military industry.

The industrial enterprises are concentrated in the city wards of Fukiai (the eastern section) and Hyogo (in the southwest). The city also houses the affiliates of foreign banks and commercial and industrial firms. Kobe has a school of commerce, a university, a technical college, and an observatory. It is a center for international tourism; in the vicinity of the city are national parks, hot springs, and sea beaches (including the Akashi health spa). Kobe has a subway system.

N. A. SMIRNOV

Kobe

a port in S Japan, on S Honshu on Osaka Bay: formed in 1889 by the amalgamation of Hyogo and Kobe; a major industrial complex, producing ships, steel, and rubber goods. Pop.: 1 478 380 (2002 est.)