• Kyodo



  • Coming of Age Day national holiday.
  • Prime Minister Shinzo Abe to visit United Arab Emirates. Abe is calling for efforts to stabilize region amid simmering tensions between Iran and United States. Five-day tour began Saturday in Saudi Arabia and will also take him to Oman.
  • Foreign Minister Toshimitsu Motegi to visit United States through Jan. 16. Motegi will meet with Secretary of State Mike Pompeo in San Francisco. Tokyo is seeking to play mediator role in U.S.-Iran standoff. Top diplomats will also hold three-way talks with South Korean Foreign Minister Kang Kyung-wha to discuss cooperation on North Korean issues.


  • Abe to visit Oman.
  • Defense Minister Taro Kono to meet U.S. Defense Secretary Mark Esper in Washington. Kono is expected to explain Japan’s dispatch of Maritime Self-Defense Force planes and destroyer to Middle East on information-gathering mission while not joining U.S-led maritime security initiative in the region.
  • Finance Ministry to release preliminary balance of payments statistics for November.
  • Cabinet Office to release results of monthly “economy watchers” survey for December.


  • Four years since deadly ski tour bus accident in Karuizawa, Nagano Prefecture, that killed 15 people


  • Cabinet Office to release machinery orders data for November.
  • Imperial family to hold annual New Year Poetry Reading Ceremony.
  • Otsu District Court to hand down ruling over fatal accident in which car rammed into toddlers in Shiga Prefecture in May. Prosecutors have sought imprisonment of 5½ years for 53-year-old driver, Fumiko Shintate, accusing her of carelessly turning right at crossing before crashing into vehicle traveling in opposite lane that went on to kill two toddlers and injure 11 others and three nursery school teachers.


  • Japan Tourism Agency to release number of foreign visitors to Japan for December and for 2019.
  • The 25th anniversary of Great Hanshin Earthquake that devastated Kobe, vicinities.
  • Masatsugu Asakawa, former vice finance minister for international affairs, to take up presidency of Asian Development Bank.


  • National Center Test for University Admissions to be held through Jan. 19. Test will be held for last time. Government plans to introduce new standardized university entrance exams in January 2021 amid controversy over test formats after repeated change of plans.


  • The 60th anniversary of signing of Japan-U.S. security treaty.
  • Campaign to start for mayoral election in Kyoto.