Cablegate: Daily Summary of Japanese Press 10/27/09

DE RUEHKO #2482/01 3000630
P 270630Z OCT 09




E.O. 12958: N/A


(1) Editorial: Prime minister in policy speech leaves policy
priorities vague (Sankei)

(2) PM Hatoyama's policy speech to Diet strives to give impression
of "change" (Nikkei)

(3) New House of Councillors standing and special committee chairs

(4) Governor Nakaima shifts emphasis to "relocation out of Okinawa
as the best option" on Futenma issue (Ryukyu Shimpo)

(5) Diet members elected from Okinawa react to PM Hatoyama's policy
speech (Okinawa Times)

(6) Japan-U.S. aviation talks on open sky accord: Japan shifts to
positive stance (Mainichi)


(1) Editorial: Prime minister in policy speech leaves policy
priorities vague

SANKEI (Page 2) (Full)
October 27, 2009

Prime Minister Yukio Hatoyama's first policy speech yesterday was
unique, frequently citing such buzzwords as "protect the lives of
people" and "revive peoples' ties to communities."

Hatoyama quoted at length the requests and plaints he heard during
the campaign for the latest general election from an old woman whose
son committed suicide. He thus tried to make an impression on his
listeners by introducing specific cases. By avoiding bureaucratese,
he probably aimed to underscore that his speech was easy to
understand. It can be said that in his first Diet speech he employed
ingenuity to reflect the policy of ending reliance on bureaucrats.

In the speech, Hatoyama vowed to "clean up the postwar government"
and "create new communities" in which people can support one other.
These policy directions are considered proper. But the speech was
less persuasive in that it lacked details about how the government
intends to translate both domestic and foreign policies into

With such contents, it is impossible to erase public concern over
whether the government would actually be able to carry out reforms.
The prime minister is obligated to present a definite policy
judgment to the people because they entrusted him with political

Regarding foreign policy, Hatoyama renewed his call for a close and
equal Japan-U.S. alliance. He then said, "Japan will actively
propose" what role the alliance should play in maintaining global
peace and security.

We wonder, though, whether Japan is actually ready to make proposals
to the U.S. on the premise that it will assume a heavier
responsibility. In order for Self-Defense Force troops to be able to
demonstrate a greater capacity overseas, it is necessary to revise
the Constitution to enable them to use the right to collective

TOKYO 00002482 002 OF 009

self-defense. But Hatoyama made no reference to these measures. In
this sense, the speech lacked practicality.

Regarding the issue of relocating the U.S. Marine Corps' Futenma Air
Station, Hatoyama just explained its present situation. Hatoyama has
vowed to make Japan a country that the international community
trusts as a "bridge" across the world, but what he should do first
is to make efforts to prevent the Japan-U.S. alliance, which the
Hatoyama administration defines as the cornerstone of its foreign
and security policies, from being undermined.

As for domestic tasks as well, it can be said that the speech just
touched on planks in his party's platform for the latest House of
Representatives election. A more detailed explanation is also needed
of the proposed review of the postal privatization plan, as it
represents a serious policy switch following the change of

How will the Hatoyama administration turn important national
projects into reality, such as making Haneda Airport an
around-the-clock international hub? How will the administration set
an order of priority for its policies? The prime minister's
leadership is being tested by these challenges.

He took up his own political fund scandal and apologized for it,
saying, "I will fully cooperate with the investigation." But he did
not promise to give any further explanation of the scandal. That was
disappointing. How is he going to cope with the alleged violation of
the Political Funds Control Law? He must not forget to make efforts
for a restoration of public trust in politics.

(2) PM Hatoyama's policy speech to Diet strives to give impression
of "change"

NIKKEI (Page 2) (Full)
October 27, 2009

Prime Minister Yukio Hatoyama delivered his first policy speech
after assuming office on Oct. 26. The 52-minute-long speech
reflected the Prime Minister's desire to give the impression of
"change" from the ideals and policies of the Liberal Democratic
Party administration. Attempts at exercising political leadership
could be gleaned even from the process of drafting the speech.
However, he is still in the process of groping for ways to tie
political leadership to real policies.

After the Diet's plenary sessions, Hatoyama told reporters at the
Prime Minister's Official Residence (Kantei): "I would like people
to feel that Japan is going to become a different country, that it
will be interesting to participate, and that they would like to
participate." Democratic Party of Japan Secretary General Ichiro
Ozawa commented during a news conference that it was an
"outstanding, brilliant speech."

Economic policy

In his speech Hatoyama gave the most emphasis to "yuai (fraternal)
politics." He devoted almost one-fourth of the speech to explaining
this concept and his own political philosophy, based on the notion
that "politics exists for the socially disadvantaged." Expressions
related to yuai were used extensively in his discourse on social
security policy. He emphasized his focus on the socially

TOKYO 00002482 003 OF 009

disadvantaged, stating that "the previous policy of curbing spending
for medical and nursing services single-mindedly from the fiscal
point of view will be changed." He promised to "study a new system
to replace the medical insurance system for senior citizens 75 years
of age and older." Many of these pronouncements would have been
resisted by the Ministry of Finance in the past.

Hatoyama also talked about a drastic review of the postal
businesses, in consideration for coalition partner People's New
Party (PNP), which prioritizes this issue. This immediately drew
words of appreciation from PNP leader Shizuka Kamei, state minister
for financial affairs and postal reform, who said: "You can really
feel that the times are changing."

Foreign policy

The most prominent change in foreign policy is in the Japan-U.S.
relationship. Hatoyama advocated a "close and equal Japan-U.S.
alliance" and expressed his intention to "deepen a multilayered
Japan-U.S. alliance," citing the response to global warming and
elimination of nuclear arms as examples. However, with regard to the
key issue of U.S. Forces Japan realignment, Hatoyama did not talk
about dealing with this "in the direction of a review," as
stipulated in the coalition government accord. He limited himself to
remarks about dealing with the issue "seriously" by reexamining the
bilateral agreement and giving heed to the sentiments of Okinawa's

He later stressed to reporters that "I talked about how to set the
course for the review." Coalition partner Social Democratic Party
(SDP), which advocates the relocation of the U.S. forces' Futenma
Air Station out of Okinawa, also did not take issue with this. SDP
Secretary General Yasumasa Shigeno said: "I think it is good that he
summed up the various recent statements by cabinet ministers in a
straightforward manner."

Drafting process

The process of drafting the policy speech has also changed. In the
past, the speech tended to be finalized by the prime minister's
aides coordinating with the officials in charge in each ministry to
make changes to the first draft. The procedures were changed this
time. For example, Foreign Minister Katsuya Okada gathered all
Ministry of Foreign Affairs officials at or above the rank of
section chief to a meeting for an exchange of views. Based on this
meeting, he proposed the inclusion in the speech of the Prime
Minister's goal to reduce the emission of greenhouse gases by 25
percent from 1990 levels by 2020.

Since it was thought that "the speech this time will not devote much
time to specific policies" (according to a senior Ministry of
Agriculture, Forestry, and Fisheries official), some ministries had
absolutely no role in drafting the speech. One of the top political
officials of the MOF stated unequivocally: "This is no longer an age
when the bureaucracy gets involved with (politicians') policy

(3) New House of Councillors standing and special committee chairs

MAINICHI (Page 5) (Full)
October 27, 2009

TOKYO 00002482 004 OF 009

? Upper House Standing Committee Chairs

Cabinet Committee Chair Tsunenori Kawai
Former parliamentary secretary of the Ministry of Internal Affairs
and Communications; Keio University; elected in the Toyama
constituency; first term; 72 years old; Liberal Democratic Party

General Affairs Committee Chair Taisuke Sato
Former parliamentary vice minister of education; Aichi University of
Education; Aichi constituency; second term (second term in the House
of Representatives); 66; Democratic Party of Japan (DPJ)

Judicial Affairs Committee Chair Akira Matsu
Former senior vice minister of the Ministry of Economy, Trade and
Industry; Takarazuka Music School; Kanagawa constituency; third
term; 61; New Komeito

Foreign Affairs and Defense Committee Chair Naoki Tanaka
Former senior vice minister of the Ministry of Agriculture, Forestry
and Fisheries; Keio University; Niigata constituency; second term
(third term in the Lower House); 69; DPJ

Financial Affairs Committee Chair Masamitsu Oishi
Former budget committee chairman; Whitworth University, U.S.A.;
proportional representation; first term (fifth term in the Lower
House); 64; DPJ

Education, Culture, and Science Committee Chair Toshiei Mizuochi
Former parliamentary secretary of the Ministry of Education, Culture
and Science; Niigata Commercial High School; proportional
representation; first term; 66; LDP

Health, Labor, and Welfare Committee Chair Minoru Yanagida
Former financial affairs committee chairman; University of Tokyo;
Hiroshima constituency; second term (second term in the Lower
House); 54; DPJ

Agriculture, Forestry, and Fisheries Committee Chair Toshio Ogawa
Former DPJ's shadow justice minister; Rikkyo University; Tokyo
constituency; second term; 61; DPJ

Economy and Industry Committee Chair Yoshitake Kimata
Former DPJ vice secretary general; Hitotsubashi University; Aichi
constituency; second term; 44; DPJ

Land and Transport Committee Chair Kazuyasu Shiina
Former parliamentary finance secretary; Nihon University; Chiba
constituency; second term; 57; LDP

Environment Committee Chair Eriko Yamatani
Former special advisor to the prime minister, University of the
Sacred Heart; proportional representation; first term (first term in
the Lower House); 59; LDP

Budget Committee Chair Susumu Yanase
Former DPJ Diet affairs deputy chair; Tohoku University; Tochigi
constituency; second term (second term in the Lower House); 59; DPJ

Audit Committee Chair Mieko Kamimoto
Former Audit committee director; Fukuoka University of Education;
proportional representation; second term; 61; DPJ

TOKYO 00002482 005 OF 009

Oversight of Administration Committee Chair Takao Watanabe
Former senior vice minister of the Ministry of Health, Labor, and
Welfare; Tohoku University; proportional representation; third term;
59; New Komeito

? House of Councillors Special Committee Chairs

Disasters Special Committee Chair Tomiko Okazaki
Former DPJ's shadow environment minister; Fukushima Prefectural
Girls' High School; Miyagi constituency; third term (second term in
the Lower House); 65; DPJ

Okinawa and Northern Problems Special Committee Chair Ichiro
Former Upper House steering committee chairman; University of Tokyo;
Miyagi constituency; third term; 72; LDP

Political Ethics and Elections Special Committee Chair Kentaro Kudo
Former Cabinet Committee member; Chuo University; proportional
representation; first term (second term in the Lower House); 67;

Abductions Special Committee Chair Takeshi Maeda
Former economy and industry committee member; Kyoto University
Graduate School; proportional representation; first term (fourth
term in the Lower House); 72; DPJ

Official Development Assistance Special Committee Chair Hiromi
Former senior vice minister of the Ministry of Agriculture,
Forestry, and Fisheries; left Chuo University in mid-course; third
term; 67; LDP

Consumer Affairs Special Committee Chair Kanae Yamamoto
Former parliamentary secretary of the Ministry of Economy, Trade and
Industry; Kyoto University; proportional representation; second
term; 38; New Komeito

(4) Governor Nakaima shifts emphasis to "relocation out of Okinawa
as the best option" on Futenma issue

RYUKYU SHIMPO (Page 1) (Full)
October 27, 2009

On Oct. 26 Governor Hirokazu Nakaima shifted from his previous
position of accepting the relocation of the U.S. forces' Futenma Air
Station within the prefecture to emphasizing "relocation out of
Okinawa". He also asked the government not to make a hasty decision,
but to consider carefully the possibility of relocating the Futenma
base out of Okinawa. He said: "It will not do for them to simply
think that it is okay to relocate within Okinawa because the
governor accepts it. I hope that Mr. (Yukio) Hatoyama will not
forget his original intention (of relocation out of Okinawa) and
execute this without fail." He thus indicated a sense of alarm that
Okinawa's position may be used by the government as a justification
for relocation within the prefecture.

Nakaima commented on Prime Minister Yukio Hatoyama's policy speech
on Oct. 26, stating: "We have dealt with this issue thinking that
relocation within the prefecture is unavoidable, but our position
that relocation out of Okinawa is the best option remains unchanged.

TOKYO 00002482 006 OF 009

If we are presented with a realistic and concrete plan for
relocation out of Okinawa, we will also strongly call for its
implementation." He gave emphasis to relocation out of the

Reacting to remarks by Foreign Minister Katsuya Okada before
Hatoyama's policy speech indicating he had given up on relocating
the Futenma base out of Okinawa, Nakaima expressed his displeasure:
"The whole cabinet should work hard on this together. This is not a
simple matter and will require strenuous effort. It will not do if
they simply say: 'We looked into it but found out that it's not
possible.' "

Nakaima also indicated that he is not asking that a decision be made
at an early date. He said: "Will relocation be possible to as far as
Hokkaido? Or will it have to be a location close by? In the case of
relocation out of Japan, which country will it be? Does it have to
be the United States? If they show that they are working steadily
toward a basic direction, Okinawa is also willing to go for the best

Regarding the fact that the Prime Minister's policy speech did not
mention economic development measures for Okinawa, Nakaima said:
"There was no mention at all of development plans for Okinawa as a
whole. There are more projects that we want the national government
to take responsibility for implementing, such as the utilization of
returned military base land and postwar settlement measures. It is
regrettable that the Prime Minister has paid no attention to

(5) Diet members elected from Okinawa react to PM Hatoyama's policy

OKINAWA TIMES (Page 3) (Full)
October 27, 2009

Find a solution to the Futenma issue

House of Representatives member Mikio Shimoji (People's New Party)

The speech reflected Prime Minister Yukio Hatoyama's strong desire
to build a nation that cares. He also included his own thoughts on
the Okinawa issues. What is important from now on is to clearly
present a solution to the top pending issue of Futenma relocation.

Lack of specifics regrettable

Lower House member Kantoku Teruya (Social Democratic Party (SDP))

He was able to convey his determination to eliminate the system of
reliance on bureaucrats and to shift to new politics centered on the
politicians and the people. It is regrettable that he did not go
into the specifics of how to reduce the burden imposed by military
bases on Okinawa, of his policy for resolving the Futenma issue, and
of the issues relating to Okinawa's economic development.

Hopes pinned on yuai politics

Lower House member Denny Tamaki (Democratic Party of Japan (DPJ))

He explained the realization of yuai (fraternity) politics to the
people in simple language, and his remarks on Okinawa reflected deep

TOKYO 00002482 007 OF 009

understanding of the feelings of the Okinawan people. I have high
hopes for the realization (of his Okinawa policy). The speech
conveyed the significance of Japan's role in Asia.

Talking from the standpoint of the weak

Lower House member Chobin Zukeran (DPJ)

The speech was easy to understand and he spoke from the standpoint
of the weak. It matched the direction the people want the government
to head toward. I could sense his serious attitude when he said that
he will "pay heed to Okinawa's feelings without fail" in dealing
with the U.S. Forces Japan realignment issues. We should cooperate
and work hard for the relocation (of the Futenma base) out of
Okinawa or out of Japan.

Demand for dismantling the bases

Lower House member Seiken Akamine (Japanese Communist Party)

He needed to give a more concrete explanation on social security,
employment measures, and other issues. His remarks on the Futenma
issue showed restraint for the benefit of the U.S. forces. I would
like to demand that he make serious efforts to negotiate with the
U.S. under the slogans of "opposition to rotating military bases
within Okinawa" and "dismantling of the Futenma base."

No mention of relocation

House of Councillors member Keiko Itokazu (independent)

In terms of the execution of the tripartite agreement on reducing
the burden imposed by the bases, the speech represented a
regression. A close and equal Japan-U.S. alliance means a review of
the U.S. military bases in Japan. The speech should have included a
statement on exercising political leadership for the relocation of
the Futenma base out of Okinawa.

Okinawa can contribute to change

Upper House member Shokichi Kina (DPJ)

The policy speech was a declaration on moving from an exclusionist
Japan-U.S. alliance to a country open to the world. Okinawa will be
able to make major contributions to the transformation into an open
maritime country. However, the message on the base issue remained
that of an exclusionist Japan-U.S. alliance.

Economic development measures also needed

Upper House member Aiko Shimajiri (Liberal Democratic Party)

The speech was short on specifics. It failed to provide a vision for
Japan's future. Okinawa policy consists not only of the bases, but
also needs to be promoted along with economic development measures.
The failure to mention development reflected the DPJ's inadequate

Produce results through negotiations

Upper House member Tokushin Yamauchi (SDP)

TOKYO 00002482 008 OF 009

The speech elaborated on the new administration's political
philosophy and emphasized a major change to politics focused on
protecting the people's lives and livelihood. It was short on
specifics on the base issues in Okinawa, so I am not able to give it
full marks. I hope the Prime Minister will show greater courage to
negotiate in a dignified manner and produce results befitting the
new administration.

(6) Japan-U.S. aviation talks on open sky accord: Japan shifts to
positive stance

MAINICHI (Page 4) (Full)
October 27, 2009

Japanese and U.S. aviation officials on Oct. 26 started talks in
Tokyo to reach an agreement to sign an open sky accord. The signing
of such an accord, which allows air carriers to set flight routes
and the number of flights at their own discretion, will likely
affect the future of Japan Airlines, now under rehabilitation. The
governments of the two countries aim to reach an agreement before
year's end. Attention is focused on whether progress can be achieved
at the talks, which will continue through the 29th.

Liberalization is U.S.'s national policy

The ongoing bilateral talks are the fourth round of a series of
formal talks started in October last year. The talks have been
convened, coinciding with the expansion of departure and arrival
slots at both airports next year, following the completion of the
work to extend a runway at Narita Airport and the construction of a
fourth runway (to be completed next October) at Haneda airport.

The talks will focus on departure and arrival slots at Narita
Airport and Haneda Airport, and the application of antitrust
immunity (ATI), as well as an open sky accord.

Air carriers that operate between two countries, flight routes, and
the number of flights are currently set at government-to-government
talks. However, if two countries sign an open sky accord, air
carriers of both countries can set flight routes between the two
countries and the number of flights they operate at their own

The U.S., which adopts an open sky policy as a national policy, has
been working on Japan to sign an open sky accord for a long time.
However, the Japanese side has been negative toward the idea, taking
the stand that the top priority is to correct the excessive number
of slots given to the U.S. at Narita Airport. However, the
government has shifted to a positive stance this year, determining
that riding the global trend toward liberalization would make it
easier for Japanese carriers to boost competitiveness.

Advantage of strengthened ties

Departure and arrival slots both at Narita Airport and Haneda
Airport are already fully occupied. Signing an open sky agreement
will not directly lead to an increased number of flights. Rather,
signing such an accord has the major advantage of making it easier
for members of international airline alliances to strengthen ties
with each other.

TOKYO 00002482 009 OF 009

There are three international airline alliances, including Oneworld,
joined by JAL, and Star Alliance, joined by All Nippon Airways
(ANA). Members are strengthening ties by cutting costs through
code-sharing flights or adopting a common discount ticket system.
Chances are that adopting those measures for U.S. routes could
infringe on the U.S. Anti-Trust Act, necessitating carriers of the
other country to obtain ATI immunity from the U.S. government. The
U.S. only grants ATI immunity to carriers of countries with which it
has signed an open sky agreement.

At the stage of mapping out a rehabilitation plan, JAL had intended
to strengthen its network with member carriers of the airline
alliance, using capital injected either by Delta Air Lines or
American Airlines. However, the plan has been annulled due to the
change in government. Accordingly, capital injection talks have been
suspended. Chances are that if a new rehabilitation plan is
prepared, such talks could be resumed. Should that occur, the
signing of an open sky accord would become significant.

Imbalance in numbers of departure and arrival slots granted to
Japanese and U.S. carriers

The Japanese government has long been making an issue over the
imbalance in numbers of departure and arrival slots granted to Japan
and the U.S. Regarding the number of the flights of passenger planes
operating between Japan and the U.S., Japanese carriers operate 135
flights a week, while U.S. carriers have 296 flights. In particular,
departure and arrival slots given to U.S. carriers at Narita Airport
account for 28 percent of all slots, although the number of U.S.
airline companies' passengers traveling between Narita and the U.S.
to the total number of passengers using Narita Airport stands at 17
percent (fiscal 2007). This is because U.S. carriers dominated
Japan-U.S. routes for some time after the War, and they still retain
their vested interests. The Japanese side is insisting on a greater
portion of slots being granted to Japanese carriers on a priority
basis. An agreement to conclude an open sky accord needs to be
reached in tandem with the departure and arrival slot issue.


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