The Liberal Democratic Party on Tuesday approved a government proposal to expand the scope of a blue-collar skilled worker visa that effectively allows holders to live in the country indefinitely.

In a possible major shift in the country's foreign labor policy, Prime Minister Fumio Kishida's government is expected to formally endorse the plan next month in response to calls from the business community, which is seeking to secure workers amid a chronic labor shortage.

Under the plan, approved by an LDP committee on Tuesday, the government will increase the number of industry sectors able to grant foreign workers a special status that effectively grants them permanent residency, with it rising from two to 11.