Man's calling to promote Japan-South Korea ties

Dec 24, 2013

Man's calling to promote Japan-South Korea ties


Having majored in chemistry and played American football at university, Tomoyuki Banba never imagined he would lead an organization to promote relations between Japan and South Korea in the future. “I visited South Korea for a friendship match but never thought I’d get a ...

Dec 22, 2013

Abe's second strike against freedoms

On the heels of the enactment of the state secrets protection law, the Abe administration is preparing a bill that would criminalize the act of "conspiracy" for the first time.

Dec 21, 2013

Japan hits top in use of apps

Japan may have become the world's top country for generating mobile app revenue, but this brave new world poses dangers to unwary customers.

Dec 19, 2013

Defense buildup won't bring security

With the adoption of Japan's first comprehensive guideline for security policy and diplomacy, the Abe Cabinet appears to operate under the illusion that the use of force ultimately could resolve the difficult situation the nation finds itself in.

Dec 17, 2013

Misguided focus on test results

Reversing its traditional position, the education ministry has decided to let municipal boards of education publicize the results for individual schools in the achievement tests taken by sixth and ninth graders nationwide. An even worse obsession with test scores could follow.

Dec 17, 2013

So far, so good for 'Abenomics'


Give the first year of "Abenomics" an "E" for effort, as the "third arrow" of the plan — long-term growth strategy — cannot yet be fairly assessed. Hopefully bureaucratic resistance to deregulation will soften in the coming year.

Dec 16, 2013

Defaulting to the old ways

The Abe administration seems to be reverting to an old energy policy by revisiting an old policymaking process, despite the March 2011 Fukushima nuclear plant disaster.

Dec 14, 2013

Nursing services under the knife

The health and welfare ministry plans to end some services under the nursing care insurance system for people whose conditions are not so severe, and have municipalities take them over.

Dec 14, 2013

A fair division of tax revenues

The central government should try to work out a permanent system of distributing prefectural corporate taxes to local governments that will help stabilize local revenue and decentralize administrations.