A recent rise in approval ratings for his Cabinet has strengthened speculation that Prime Minister Fumio Kishida may dissolve the House of Representatives soon after the Group of Seven summit in his constituency of Hiroshima from next Friday.

The ruling Liberal Democratic Party, headed by Kishida, won four of the five seats in parliament up for grabs in by-elections in late April, as voters appear to have given high marks to his diplomatic efforts, such as improving ties with South Korea and a surprise visit to Ukraine.

But it remains to be seen whether the LDP will be able to increase its seats in a potential snap election, as it only managed to win the by-elections by a narrow margin and lost in a constituency to a growing opposition party based in Osaka.