Japan Timeline

Timeline for June 2024


Emperor Naruhito’s state visit to Britain and a call from Keidanren for the introduction of a dual-surname system were among the leading stories in Japan in June 2024.


At talks in Singapore between defense ministers from Japan, the United States, and South Korea, the countries agree to conduct a joint cross-domain exercise this summer called Freedom Edge.

Golfer Sasō Yūka wins the US Women’s Open for the second time, three years after her first triumph.

Sasō Yūka with the US Women’s Open trophy on June 2, 2024. (© AFP/Jiji)
Sasō Yūka with the US Women’s Open trophy on June 2, 2024. (© AFP/Jiji)


The Ministry of Land, Infrastructure, Transport, and Tourism announces that it has confirmed improper testing on 38 models of vehicles produced by Toyota, Mazda, Yamaha, Honda, and Suzuki.

At a Tokyo press conference, Charles Oppenheimer, a grandson of Manhattan Project leader Robert Oppenheimer, speaks out against nuclear weapons and in favor of nuclear energy.


The Ministry of Health, Labor, and Welfare publishes demographic statistics showing that the total fertility rate, indicating the number of children a woman has in her lifetime, dropped to 1.20 in 2023, which is a record low since statistics were first collated in 1947.

Amendments to the Child and Childcare Support Act, including major increases in childcare allowance, are passed through the Diet.

Biochemist Endō Akira dies at the age of 90. He discovered statins, which help lower cholesterol levels.


Architect Maki Fumihiko, a winner of the Pritzker Prize known for his designs for Daikanyama Hillside Terrace and the Tokyo Metropolitan Gymnasium in Tokyo and the 4 World Trade Center in New York, dies at the age of 95.

Tokyo Metropolitan Gymnasium © Jiji.
Tokyo Metropolitan Gymnasium © Jiji.

Tokyo DisneySea opens its new Fantasy Springs area with attractions themed on Frozen, Tangled, and Peter Pan.


Tennis player Oda Tokito wins his second wheelchair men’s singles title at the French Open, marking his fourth Grand Slam victory.

Oda Tokito celebrates his French Open win. (© Reuters)
Oda Tokito celebrates his French Open win. (© Reuters)


Keidanren (Japan Business Federation) calls for the rapid introduction of a system allowing married couples to use separate surnames, saying the current system is a business risk.

Amendments to the Immigration Control and Refugee Recognition Act come into effect. Refugees may now be deported after three attempts at applying for refugee status.


The Global Gender Gap Report issued by the World Economic Forum ranks Japan 118th out of 146 countries, which is the lowest ranking among the G7 nations.

The Act on Smartphone Software Competition Promotion passes into law in the Diet. It aims to open up app stores operated by IT giants like Apple and Alphabet (Google).


Japan Post announces that the price of stamps will rise from October 1, increasing to ¥110 for standard letters and ¥85 for postcards.

Mrs. Green Apple withdraws a music video for its song “Columbus” from distribution after criticism that it is colonial and racist.


The Bank of Japan decides to reduce its purchases of government bonds, with a specific plan for the next year or two to be decided at its next policy meeting at the end of July.

Japan is party to a joint statement at the G7 meeting in Fasano, Italy, voicing concern about China’s support for Russia’s invasion of Ukraine.


Supporters of Okinawa Governor Tamaki Denny fail to win a majority in the 48-seat Okinawa prefectural assembly, securing only 20 seats. This makes it difficult for him to maintain opposition to the relocation of US Futenma Air Station to Henoko in Nago.


Amendments to the Political Funds Control Act proposed by the Liberal Democratic Party after its slush funds scandal pass through the Diet with the support of the LDP and Kōmeitō, despite questions about their effectiveness.

The Diet passes a child protection law to create a Japanese equivalent to the British Disclosure and Barring Service to check whether those involved in jobs with children have a history of sexual crimes


Campaigning begins in the Tokyo gubernatorial election. There are a record 56 candidates, which is far more than the 20 in 2020. The election will take place on July 7.

Tokyo gubernatorial candidates from left: Ishimaru Shinji, Koike Yuriko (incumbent), Renhō, and Tamogami Toshio. (© Jiji)
Tokyo gubernatorial candidates from left: Ishimaru Shinji, Koike Yuriko (incumbent), Renhō, and Tamogami Toshio. (© Jiji)


The Japan Meteorological Agency announces the start of rainy season in the Kansai, Tōkai, and Kantō Kōshin regions. Kansai and Tōkai are 15 days later than an average year and 23 days later than 2023, while Kantō Kōshin is 14 days later than an average year and 13 days later than 2023.


Emperor Naruhito and Empress Masako begin an official visit to Britain. On June 25, they attend a welcome ceremony as state guests, and ride in carriages with King Charles III and Queen Camilla. On June 27, they visit Windsor Castle and lay flowers at the tombs of Queen Elizabeth II and Prince Philip.


The Financial Services Agency issues a business improvement order to MUFG Bank and two other companies affiliated with Mitsubishi UFJ Financial Group for illegally sharing customer information without permission. MUFG and MUFG Bank are ordered to submit reports on improvements, based on the Banking Act.

The National Police Agency begins a special inspection of the Kagoshima Prefectural Police after a series of incidents including the arrest of the former head of its community safety division. Nogawa Akiteru, the prefectural police chief, and other senior officials will be questioned.


The Shizuoka Prefectural Police announce that they found three people lying near the Mount Fuji caldera. They are later confirmed dead. The three were found during a search for a man who went missing after setting out to climb Mount Fuji on June 21.

The yen falls to more than 160 against the US dollar, which is the weakest it has been since December 1986.


The Ministry of Health, Labor, and Welfare announces that a further 76 deaths are suspected of being connected with beni kōji supplements produced by Kobayashi Pharmaceutical.

(Originally published in Japanese. Banner photo: Emperor Naruhito and Empress Masako stand between King Charles III and Queen Camilla in a commemorative photo before the state banquet at Buckingham Palace on June 25, 2024. © Reuters.)

Japan Timeline