Tag - focus



In early February, the Finance Ministry announced that government debt at the end of last year had reached a record high of ¥1.2 quadrillion.
JAPAN / Politics / FOCUS
Feb 27, 2024
With downfall of Abe faction, some see a shift in Japan’s debt debate
The faction has long promoted fiscal stimulus, but its demise combined with wider economic conditions could open up space for a different approach.
Takuya Yokota (second from right), head of a group of families of abductees to North Korea, speaks at a news conference in Tokyo on Sunday.
JAPAN / Politics / FOCUS
Feb 26, 2024
Families of North Korea abductees give Japan breathing room for summit
The group won't oppose Tokyo's lifting of sanctions on Pyongyang if all abductees are returned while their parents' generation is still alive.
Japan, Britain and Italy have made headway in their joint next-generation fighter aircraft project, with industry officials saying that the partners are close to completing the aircraft’s conceptual design phase.
Feb 26, 2024
Japan joint fighter program gains steam as firms zero in on conceptual design
The completion of the conceptual design phase will allow Japan, Britain and Italy to move to the next stage of the program next year.
With concerns over economics cutting across party lines, the preferred degree of toughness on China tends to be a policy rather than partisan divide.
Feb 25, 2024
Biden or Trump, hawkish economic approach on China to intensify
With concerns over economics cutting across party lines, the preferred degree of toughness on Beijing tends to be a policy rather than partisan divide.
A screen grab shows Anton Kuznetsov, a fighter in the BARS 9 volunteer force of the Russian military, in an apartment in Balakliia, Ukraine, in September 2022
WORLD / Politics / FOCUS
Feb 25, 2024
How Russia's military uses volunteer fighters to plug gaps in Ukraine
Approach provides Moscow with an additional avenue from which to mobilize parts of the population, get them trained and provide additional mass.
U.S. House Speaker Mike Johnson walks out of a vote on Capitol Hill in Washington, on Feb. 15.
WORLD / Politics / FOCUS
Feb 24, 2024
U.S. House speaker must now confront his own party’s sabotage
Multiple senior House Republicans, granted anonymity to speak frankly, now portray Mike Johnson as an insecure leader who faces a steep learning curve.
For all of U.S. President Joe Biden’s talk about the sanctions, his team is still unwilling to go after revenue streams that experts argue would really cripple Russia’s economy, for fear of setting off broad shocks that could rebound on the U.S. economy.
WORLD / Politics / FOCUS
Feb 24, 2024
U.S. sidesteps riskiest sanctions in latest move against Russia
The U.S. is concerned that the toughest measures left in Washington's arsenal risk roiling the global economy.
A man pours water into a plastic tank at an evacuation shelter in the city of Suzu, Ishikawa Prefecture, on Feb. 1.
JAPAN / Society / FOCUS
Feb 23, 2024
Noto quake highlights aging water systems in depopulating areas
Nearly 22,000 homes in Ishikawa Prefecture are still without water, and the shortage has sparked debate on how to maintain services in depopulating areas.
Prime Minister Fumio Kishida speaks to reporters at the Prime Minister's Office in Tokyo on Thursday.
JAPAN / Politics / FOCUS
Feb 23, 2024
Nikkei's all-time high unlikely to serve as tailwind for Kishida
Many analysts point out that the jump in Tokyo shares is not due to the economic and monetary policies of the government and the Bank of Japan.
Intuitive Machines' Odysseus spacecraft passes over the near side of the moon following lunar orbit insertion on Wednesday.
WORLD / Science & Health / FOCUS
Feb 23, 2024
Why it took the U.S. 51 years to get back on the moon
Intuitive Machines has landed a robotic spacecraft on the moon, becoming the first private firm to place a vehicle intact on the lunar surface.
The Japan Pavillion is seen at the Singapore Airshow on Wednesday.
Feb 21, 2024
At top airshow, Japanese firms explore defense export opportunities
They are offering a diverse and sophisticated range of products following a revision of guidelines on defense equipment and technology transfer.
China's C919 — the country's first domestically developed large, narrow-body passenger aircraft, is displayed at the Singapore Air Show on Tuesday.
Feb 20, 2024
China debuts C919 aircraft in Singapore, but can it challenge Boeing and Airbus?
The Asian powerhouse hopes the country's first domestically developed large, narrow-body passenger aircraft will help it break into new markets.
A second test model of the H3 rocket lifts off from the launch pad at Tanegashima Space Center on the southwestern island of Tanegashima, Kagoshima Prefecture, on Saturday.
JAPAN / Science & Health / FOCUS
Feb 20, 2024
Can Japan’s new H3 rocket compete with Elon Musk’s Falcon 9?
In order to seriously compete with the Falcon 9, which currently dominates the market, experts say price and usability of the H3 would be key.
Ukraine's Prime Minister Denys Shmyhal meets with Prime Minister Fumio Kishida as a part of the Japan-Ukraine Conference for Promotion of Economic Growth and Reconstruction in Tokyo on Monday.
BUSINESS / Companies / FOCUS
Feb 20, 2024
Private sector vital in pacifist Japan's support for Ukraine
With Japan unable to provide military assistance under its pacifist Constitution, private investment plays a vital role in showing commitment to Ukraine.
An advertisement for the Nippon Individual Savings Account (NISA) at a Mizuho Bank branch, a unit of Mizuho Financial Group, in Tokyo on Jan. 31.
Feb 19, 2024
Turning the tide? Japan warms up to becoming an asset management hub.
The beefing-up of the NISA program alongside a new policy plan by the government shows its commitment toward getting households to invest.
French President Emmanuel Macron shakes hands with Ukrainian leader Volodymyr Zelenskyy during a news conference at the presidential Elysee Palace in Paris on Friday after signing a bilateral security agreement.
WORLD / Politics / FOCUS
Feb 17, 2024
Bilateral accords offer Ukraine a way to shore up security
New agreements with Germany and France deal with both current military support for Ukraine and its future defense against Russia.
A SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket lifts off from launchpad SLC-40 at the Kennedy Space Center on NASA's PACE mission in Cape Canaveral, Florida, on Feb. 8.
BUSINESS / Companies / FOCUS
Feb 13, 2024
Apollo to Artemis: Why America is betting big on private space
While it has seen some successes, the move could put the U.S. at risk of falling behind its principal space rival, China, in achieving major milestones.
People walk past a billboard promoting Prabowo Subianto, Indonesia's defense minister and a presidential candidate, and his running mate, Gibran Rakabuming Raka, who is the eldest son of Indonesian President Joko Widodo and current Surakarta's mayor, in Jakarta on Jan. 12.
Feb 8, 2024
Generative AI faces major test as Indonesia holds election
Front-runner Prabowo Subianto is using AI tools to create campaign art, track social media sentiment, build interactive chatbots and target voters.
Many young people who feel neglected at home flock to the Toyoko area to find a community where they can fit in.
JAPAN / Society / FOCUS
Feb 5, 2024
Toyoko Kids: The lonely street children of Tokyo
Bound together by shared neglect and marginalization, the group have formed a distinct, social media-linked youth subculture on the streets of Shinjuku.
Liberal Democratic Party Secretary-General Toshimitsu Motegi (from left), Vice President Taro Aso and Prime Minister Fumio Kishida attend a party meeting on Jan. 26.
JAPAN / Politics / FOCUS
Feb 4, 2024
Turmoil ahead for two LDP factions continuing activities
Factions led by Taro Aso and Toshimitsu Motegi continue to face calls to disband from their own members.


Hideo Shimoju points to a possible site that his fellow neighbors may relocate to. Such relocations have happened before, but not preemptively.
In disaster-prone Japan, some communities consider major moves