The United States has officially informed Japan of President Bill Clinton’s plan to visit Japan and hold talks with Prime Minister Keizo Obuchi next month, Chief Cabinet Secretary Hiromu Nonaka confirmed Thursday.The government’s chief spokesman said Tokyo and Washington are now adjusting the specific schedule, formality and agenda for the meeting.Clinton will visit here on the way back from his attendance at the informal summit of the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation forum slated for Nov. 17 and 18 in Kuala Lumpur.Japan’s sagging economy as well as the continuing difficulty surrounding Asian economies are among the likely subjects for the upcoming meeting.In their informal talks last month in New York, Clinton had urged Obuchi to quickly mend Japan’s banking system and economy to help the economies of Asia and other parts of the world.Clinton had earlier planned to stop in India and Pakistan. The plan, however, has been canceled to protest the two South Asian nations’ nuclear tests in May, thereby, creating time for visiting other countries.He may stop off in Osaka as well, a U.S. consular official here said. “Although nothing has been officially decided, we are discussing with the White House areas in Osaka where the president could visit, such as the Tempozan district,” the official said.Just before the 1995 APEC meetings in Osaka, Clinton was forced to cancel his visit at the last minute due to a government shutdown in Washington, and Vice President Al Gore attended in his place. Clinton’s April 1996 trip to Japan was limited to the Tokyo area.Last June, Clinton avoided stopping over in Japan following a state visit to China, drawing criticism from many U.S. and Japanese officials.
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