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Next month’s local assembly elections will be the first opportunity to test a law passed last year to boost the number of female lawmakers. Japan has one of the lowest participation rates of women in national parliaments in the world, and the law is meant to remedy this deficit, even if it includes no enforceable quotas or penalties. Consequently, the media has been examining local assemblies and prospects for female candidates.

Tokyo Shimbun ran an article about the Chiba prefectural assembly in its Chiba edition. Of 95 seats, only eight are held by women, and they belong to parties with fewer seats. The ruling Liberal Democratic Party (LDP) and its factions enjoy the greatest representation with 51 seats, all men. The Chiba Minshu no Kai has 11 seats, all men. And Komeito has eight seats, all men.

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