FOCUS: Japan Parties' Election Pledges Differ over COVID-19

Politics

Tokyo, Oct. 22 (Jiji Press)--Political parties in Japan are on the same page in light of the need for ending the novel coronavirus as soon as possible, but their policy pledges for the Oct. 31 general election vary over specifics, including possible legal revisions for reducing flows of people.

The ruling Liberal Democratic Party and its Komeito ally aim to speed up vaccinations and the development of drugs for COVID-19 in order to bring the pandemic under control and promote the reopening of economic activities at the same time.

Meanwhile, the leading opposition Constitutional Democratic Party of Japan puts more of its focus on increasing the number of polymerase chain reaction tests and boosting border control measures.

"A major key is putting oral drugs into practical use," Prime Minister Fumio Kishida said during a stump speech in Amagasaki, Hyogo Prefecture, western Japan, Wednesday, a day after the start of the official campaign period for the election for the House of Representatives, the all-important lower chamber of the Diet, Japan's parliament. "Such drugs will help bring social and economic activities back closer to normal," Kishida, also LDP president, said.

The LDP's election platform calls for completing coronavirus vaccinations in early November and accelerating preparations for third vaccine shots, as well as promoting the development and use of orally taken drugs in a bid to reduce severely ill coronavirus patients and COVID-19 fatalities to a minimum.

[Copyright The Jiji Press, Ltd.]

Jiji Press