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The Political History of the Consumption Tax

Prime Minister Abe Shinzō has announced that in October 2019 consumption tax will rise from the current rate of 8% to 10%. This planned hike has previously been postponed twice during Abe’s administration. Here we reflect on the circuitous history of consumption tax policy in Japan.

Cloudy Skies Ahead for Abe ShinzōFujino Kiyomitsu

Following his September victory in the LDP presidential election, Abe Shinzō entered his final three-year term as party head. Can he avoid becoming a lame duck in his last years as prime minister? And what will the post-Abe landscape look like? A longtime political journalist takes a look.

North Korean Abductions of Japanese Citizens: A Timeline

An overview of the key events over the years since the abduction of Japanese citizens by North Korea in the late 1970s and early 1980s.

No Boost to Abe from Cabinet Reshuffle, but Public Support StableTobias Harris

Prime Minister Abe Shinzō, fresh off his successful bid for a third term as leader of the Liberal Democratic Party in the September 20, 2018, party election, announced a new lineup for his cabinet and for the LDP’s leadership on October 2. The August 2017 reshuffle brought talented and experienced LDP politicians who had at times been critical of Abe into the government and arguably revived the pr…

Abe Shinzō on Track to Become Japan’s Longest-Serving Prime Minister

Prime Minister Abe Shinzō was recently elected president of the Liberal Democratic Party for the third straight time, putting him on course to become the longest-serving prime minister in Japanese history.

Abe and Ishiba Announce Candidacy for LDP Presidency

The race for the LDP presidency is now between the incumbent Abe Shinzō and third-time challenger Ishiba Shigeru. By choosing the head of the most powerful coalition party, this contest effectively decides who will become the next prime minister of Japan, so it has garnered wide attention.

Ex-MOF Official Denies Abe’s Instruction about Document Tampering (News)

Tokyo, March 27 (Jiji Press)—Former Japanese Ministry of Finance official Sagawa Nobuhisa told parliament on Tuesday that there was no instruction from the prime minister's office about altering documents on a dubious state land transaction with private school operator Moritomo Gakuen. It was the MOF's Financial Bureau that dealt with the document changes in question, Sagawa, who was director-g…

Japan’s Abe Determined to Realize Article 9 Revision

Tokyo, March 25 (Jiji Press)—Japanese Prime Minister Abe Shinzō on Sunday stressed his determination to realize a revision to war-renouncing Article 9 of the country's constitution. Prime Minister Abe addresses an LDP convention on March 25 in Tokyo. (© Jiji)  "Let's make the constitution spell out the Self-Defense Forces to put a period to the controversy over their constitutionality," Abe…

Abe Cabinet Support Rate Dives to 39%: Jiji Poll (News)

Tokyo, March 16 (Jiji Press)—Public support for the cabinet of Japanese Prime Minister Abe Shinzō in March plunged 9.4 percentage points from the previous month to 39.3%, falling short of the disapproval rate for the first time in five months, a Jiji Press opinion poll showed Friday. The support rate also fell below 40% for the first time in five months. The disapproval rate grew 8.5 points …

Abe Denies Ordering Land Sale Document Manipulation (News)

Tokyo, March 14 (Jiji Press)—Japanese Prime Minister Abe Shinzō denied Wednesday that he has ordered the manipulation of Ministry of Finance documents related to a massive discount sale of a state-owned land plot to school operator Moritomo Gakuen. Abe also quoted his wife, Akie, as saying that she has not made remarks shown in the original version of the documents. According to the orig…

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