The case for Japan’s new security strategy

US General Robert B. Neller, Commandant of the United States Marine Corps, and Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe pose for photographers prior to a meeting at Abe's official residence in Tokyo, 25 November 2015. (Photo AAP)

Author: Yoji Koda, National Security Secretariat, Japan

On 27 April 2015 the Japanese and US governments approved the revised Guidelines for Japan–US Defense Cooperation. Subsequently, on 19 September 2015, the Japanese Diet passed a package of security legislation aimed at enhancing Japan’s role in maintaining international security. Read more…

Will SEZs really help Mexico and Japan?

Containers are unloaded from a cargo vessel as truck make a long queue at Aomi International Container terminal in Tokyo, Japan, 16 November 2015. (Photo: AAP)

Author: Juan J. Palacios, University of Guadalajara

On 29 September, President Enrique Peña Nieto formally launched an initiative he had first announced in November 2014 to create, for the first time in Mexico, three special economic zones (SEZs) in the country’s poorest states. The next day, Peña Nieto submitted to Congress the draft of the law that will set the rules and conditions for the creation and operation of these zones.

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Japan’s post-Fukushima energy challenge

Workers inspect contaminated water storage tanks at the Fukushima nuclear power plant in Okuma. Following the Fukushima disaster, re-opening nuclear power plants throughout Japan will require a major change in the public mindset. (Photo: AAP).

Author: Hugh Patrick, Columbia Business School

Energy is probably Japan’s greatest vulnerability, both in environmental terms and in assured sources of supply. Japan’s long-run energy policy is simple — obtain stable supplies at low cost — but implementation is complex in what is a global, dynamic, rapidly changing set of related industries. Read more…

Where to now for ROK–China–Japan trilateral relations?

South Korean President Park Geun-hye, Chinese Premier Li Keqiang,and Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe, during a news conference after trilateral summit at the Presidential Blue House in Seoul, South Korea, 1 November, 2015. The leaders of South Korea, China and Japan met Sunday for their first summit talks in more than three years as the Northeast Asian powers struggle to find common ground amid bickering over history and territory disputes. (Photo: AAP)

Author: Soyen Park, Korea University

On 1 November 2015, the leaders of East Asia’s three main powers gathered together to hold the sixth Republic of Korea–China–Japan (KCJ) Trilateral Summit in Seoul, the Republic of Korea (ROK). It was not only the first trilateral summit since the leadership changes in all three countries, but also Read more…

What does the TPP mean for Japan’s agricultural sector?

Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe attends a meeting in Manila on 18 November, 2015, with his counterparts from 11 other countries involved in the Trans-Pacific Partnership trade bloc. (Photo: AAP)

Author: Aurelia George Mulgan, UNSW Canberra

The issue of liberalising Japan’s agricultural market presented a major, if not the major hurdle to the Abe administration’s agreement with the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) deal struck in Atlanta on 5 October 2015. Read more…

Will Japan’s war apologies ever satisfy China?

Chinese newspapers report on Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe's statement to mark the 70th anniversary of the end of World War II in their Aug. 15, 2015, editions. (Photo: AAP)

Author: Shogo Suzuki, University of Manchester

Prime Minister Shinzo Abe’s speech on 14 August 2015 to mark the 70th anniversary of the end of World War II the following day was eagerly anticipated. Given his past as a nationalist conservative, there were fears that Abe would seek to revise the general tone of the historic 1995 Murayama statement. In the end, it appeared that common sense prevailed. Read more…

Economic ties won’t ensure peace between China and Japan

At home to visitors: then Japanese prime minister Kakuei Tanaka, right, with Chinese premier Zhou Enlai, left, and president Mao Zedong at Mao’s Beijing residence in September 1972. The visit normalised relations between the Asian neighbours. (Photo: Asahi Shimbun, Getty Images).

Author: Jean-Pierre Lehmann, IMD

Will increasing economic interdependence between Japan and China increase or reduce the risk of conflict?

The conventional liberal wisdom is that economic interdependence between states enhances peaceful relations — as in the saying attributed to the early 19th century French economist Frederic Bastiat: ‘if goods don’t cross borders, armies will’. Read more…