• The Heritage Network
    • Resize:
    • A
    • A
    • A
  • Donate
  • Young Heritage Researchers Group in Japan

    A group of 10 young researchers from The Heritage Foundation arrived in Narita International Airport on Japan’s national Foundation Day holiday (also known as Kenkoku Kinen no Hi), which celebrates the establishment of Japan.

    The group—consisting of researchers from a variety of backgrounds, including national security, trade, and foreign relations—was invited on a cultural trip to Tokyo and Kyoto by the Japan Foundation in connection with the Japanese Ministry of Foreign Affairs.

    The trip is a way to share with America the culture, history, and current political and economic situation of Japan. On our first day of orientation, we were given presentations on Japan’s national security policies, Japan’s economic situation, and female participation in the labor force—three very hot topic issues in Japan right now.

    It was clear from the presentations that the U.S.–Japan security and economic alliances were of key importance not only for the two countries but also for the entire Asia–Pacific region.

    Japan’s stance on territorial issues was an important topic discussed. Masahi Nishihara, president of the Research Institute for Peace and Security, noted Japan’s current territorial issues with China, South Korea, and Russia. The latter two are the oldest of their territorial disputes, but the dispute with China over the Senkaku islands is the most worrisome. He noted that the U.S.’s presence in Okinawa was an important but highly disputed topic, with local Okinawans often protesting the neighboring Futenma airbase while more southern islanders (those closer to the Senkakus) often voice their approval of a U.S. presence in the area.

    Professor Etsuro Shioji from Hitotsubashi University looked at the comparisons and similarities between the U.S.’s and Japan’s quantitative easing policies and noted their ineffectiveness to solve financial crises. It was good to hear from someone who was more critical of Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe’s economic plan, called “Abenomics.”

    Professor Machiko Osawa briefly discussed women’s participation in the labor force and Japan’s need for its increase to work itself out of its 20-year economic stagnation. It will be hard, though, for employment to increase if Abe’s call for wage increases is implemented.

    While there were some contradictory statements about deregulating services and how much should be left to the free market, it was good to see that a strong U.S. presence in Japan is still welcome and that strong, free-flowing trade between the two countries is taking place.

    Posted in International [slideshow_deploy]

    Comments are closed.

    Comments are subject to approval and moderation. We remind everyone that The Heritage Foundation promotes a civil society where ideas and debate flourish. Please be respectful of each other and the subjects of any criticism. While we may not always agree on policy, we should all agree that being appropriately informed is everyone's intention visiting this site. Profanity, lewdness, personal attacks, and other forms of incivility will not be tolerated. Please keep your thoughts brief and avoid ALL CAPS. While we respect your first amendment rights, we are obligated to our readers to maintain these standards. Thanks for joining the conversation.

    Big Government Is NOT the Answer

    Your tax dollars are being spent on programs that we really don't need.

    I Agree I Disagree ×

    Get Heritage In Your Inbox — FREE!

    Heritage Foundation e-mails keep you updated on the ongoing policy battles in Washington and around the country.