Feb 26, 2013

Tough talks ahead for Japan

Contrary to Prime Minister Shinzo Abe's claim, Japan has not received a clear assurance from the U.S. that it can continue to retain high tariffs on such sensitive agricultural products as rice as a condition for joining the TPP talks.

Feb 24, 2013

Yamagata golf putter gifted to president

Washington KYODO Prime Minister Shinzo Abe presented President Barack Obama with a golf putter made by a Japanese manufacturer during their meeting Friday at the White House, a government official said. In 1957, Abe’s grandfather, the late Prime Minister Nobusuke Kishi, and then-U.S. President ...

Feb 19, 2013

Takeshima ceremony to draw 18 lawmakers

by Reiji Yoshida

Shimane Prefecture’s annual ceremony Friday to commemorate Japan’s 1905 annexation of Takeshima will draw at least 18 Diet members, but so far no one in the Cabinet has signaled plans to participate in the event, the prefecture said Monday. The two Takeshima islets, which ...

Abe to meet Obama with hands tied

Feb 6, 2013

Abe to meet Obama with hands tied

by Reiji Yoshida

Prime Minister Shinzo Abe is facing a major challenge ahead of his summit with U.S. President Barack Obama later this month, as calls have mounted within the ruling Liberal Democratic Party for Japan not to participate in U.S.-led free-trade talks. Abe, who heads the ...

Feb 1, 2013

Abe says he feels war sex slaves' pain

by Reiji Yoshida

Facing questions from an opposition lawmaker Thursday, Prime Minister Shinzo Abe refused to comment on the government’s position on wartime sex slaves, but he did say he feels “heart-breaking pain” when he thinks of how their human rights were violated. “In this sense, I’m ...

Kaieda lashes LDP on works spending

Jan 31, 2013

Kaieda lashes LDP on works spending

by Ayako Mie

Democratic Party of Japan leader Banri Kaieda lashed out Wednesday at the massive ¥4.7 trillion public works spending package compiled by the Liberal Democratic Party. In the first question-and-answer session in the Diet since Prime Minister Shinzo Abe’s policy speech Monday, Kaieda said, “the ...

Abe adviser Hamada wants more pliant BOJ

Jan 30, 2013

Abe adviser Hamada wants more pliant BOJ

by Hiroko Nakata

With his harsh criticism of the Bank of Japan in the spotlight, Shinzo Abe's economic brain, Koichi Hamada, says it is a big step forward for the central bank to finally adopt the new prime minister's 2 percent inflation target.