A Liberal Democratic Party panel on free-trade agreements is reluctant to allow more doctors or nurses from the Philippines and Thailand to work in Japan.

During a meeting of the ruling party’s panel Tuesday, many members protested that non-Japanese should not be allowed to work here because they have insufficient language skills to communicate with Japanese patients, LDP officials said.

As part of ongoing FTA talks, the Philippines and Thailand have called on Tokyo to allow more of their workers, especially doctors and nurses, to work in Japan.

The government might greenlight the proposal on condition that such workers obtain related licenses in Japan.

But the LDP panel members are less willing. Some have argued that foreign doctors should be allowed to treat only patients of their own nationalities.

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