Whether Japan should join the Trans-Pacific Partnership free trade scheme is one of the main issues in the coming Upper House election. If Japan becomes a member of the TPP, it will greatly impact agriculture and other industries, and people’s lives. Deplorably, political parties are talking about the TPP only in the general terms of whether they support or oppose it. They should present the TPP’s merits and demerits in a clear-cut and detailed manner so that voters can be fully informed before passing judgment on it.
Prime Minister Shinzo Abe announced in March that Japan will start a procedure to take part in negotiations for the TPP. But both the Liberal Democratic Party and its junior partner Komeito have neglected to show how the TPP will help promote Japan’s national interests.