1. Prime Minister Kishida’s Press Conference: “Communicating with the U.S. for a World Without Nuclear Weapons”
Sankei News reported on Monday that at Prime Minister Kishida’s press conference, in response to the following question: “The victims of the atomic bombing in the Prime Minister’s hometown of Hiroshima have called for ratification of the signing of a nuclear weapons ban treaty and for States parties to the treaty to join as observers. U.S. President Joe Biden has also expressed his understanding of a nuclear-free world. Do you have plans to seek cooperation at an occasion like the Japan-U.S. summit? What is your determination and commitment to the abolition of nuclear weapons?” Prime Minister Kishida said, “As the only country to have experienced nuclear war, Japan must play a strong role in leading the U.S. and other nuclear weapon states toward the exit toward a world without nuclear weapons. This is what I strongly believe. However, President Biden has already announced to the world during last year’s presidential election that he is aiming for a world without nuclear weapons. I hope that President Biden and I will be able to communicate well, and I would like to think carefully about what we can do to achieve our big goal.”
2. Prime Minister Kishida: “I Would like to Think About Cash Benefits for Women, Non-Regular Workers, and Students”
When asked whether the government would provide cash grants to individuals as a countermeasure against the CCP virus, Prime Minister Kishida said, “I would like to think about providing cash grants individually to vulnerable people who are suffering greatly from the CCP virus, such as women, non-regular workers, and students”, Asahi News reported. However, he indicated that he would decide on the amount of money after discussing it with the ruling party.
When asked about the appropriateness of replacing the Health, Labor and Welfare Minister, the Minister in charge of vaccines, and the Minister of Economic Revitalization, all of whom are in charge of responding to the CCP virus, he emphasized that “the three new ministers are capable people who have been active in their respective fields. “The important point is how well the ministers in charge work together and cooperate with each other,” he said, explaining that he had placed emphasis on strengthening the cooperation of each minister.
3.Kishida Reappoints Foreign Minister Motegi: “Continuity Is the Key to Diplomacy”
Sankei News: On Monday, Foreign Minister Toshimitsu Motegi, who was reappointed to Fumio Kishida’s cabinet, said, “We will promote the creation of a variety of new rules, including in the digital field. I would like to promote diplomacy to increase Japan’s presence and presence in the world, while continuing to exercise leadership.” He spoke to reporters that afternoon after being summoned to the Prime Minister’s Office by new Prime Minister Kishida. The prime minister told Mr. Motegi, “In diplomacy, it is very important to continue. I hope you will do your best for Japan’s diplomacy,” the prime minister told Mr. Motegi, expressing his desire to adjust his schedule for future trips. Mr. Motegi stressed that Japan’s efforts in providing vaccine support for the CCP virus overseas are “highly evaluated internationally.
4. P.M. Kishida to Boost TPP, Economic Security with Communist China in Sight
Kyodo News: While new Japanese Prime Minister Fumio Kishida has pledged to narrow the income gap by revising economic policies pursued by previous administrations, he is likely to uphold their diplomatic stance, building stronger ties with the United States and other countries sharing universal values in the face of the CCP’s rise. Given that he heads a long-running Liberal Democratic Party faction that has put an emphasis on developing ties with Communist China, Kishida is seen as a moderate who seeks to balance relations with Japan’s biggest trading partner. But at a time when U.S. President Joe Biden has adopted a hard-line policy toward Beijing, he has little room to maintain such a stance, experts say.
After being elected as successor to Prime Minister Yoshihide Suga as the LDP president last week, Kishida vowed to build a free and open Indo-Pacific based on universal values, such as democracy and the rule of law, a vision pursued by former Prime Minister Shinzo Abe and carried over to Suga. Under the vision, Kishida is expected to push forward the Trans-Pacific Partnership free trade agreement and strengthen the Quad grouping involving Japan, the United States, Australia and India, in a veiled counter against an increasingly assertive Communist China.
5.Restaurant Customers in 4 Prefectures Increased by More than 30% After the “Emergency Declaration” Was Lifted
According to NHK on Monday, during the three days from the 1st to the 3rd of this month, when the state of emergency was fully lifted, the number of people who used restaurants in the Tokyo metropolitan area’s four prefectures increased by more than 30% compared to the same days of the previous week, especially during the evening hours, according to the results of a private survey.
Toreta, a Tokyo-based IT company that provides reservation and customer management systems to restaurants, has been studying the number of customers visiting its 3,000 restaurants in the Tokyo metropolitan area’s 4 prefectures. According to the report, the number of customers visiting the store during the three days from the day the state of emergency was lifted to the 3rd increased by 32.7% compared to the same day of the previous week. The company that conducted the survey said, “Many restaurants have seen an increase in the number of reservations since the declaration was lifted, so depending on the weather, we may see an even greater increase in the use of restaurants on weekends in the future.”
6. CCP Virus: Tokyo’s Daily Cases Below 100 for 1st Time Since Nov.
According to Kyodo News, Tokyo confirmed 87 daily CCP virus cases Monday, marking the first time since November last year that the count has fallen below 100, as the capital continues to see a steady decrease in infections. A state of emergency that covered Tokyo and 18 prefectures ended on Thursday. Tokyo confirmed a record 5,773 cases on Aug. 13. The seven-day rolling average in Tokyo stood at 196.7 per day, compared with 341.6 a week earlier, the metropolitan government said. The number of hospitalized patients with severe symptoms fell by 11 from Sunday to 77.
Infection figures tend to be lower on Mondays as fewer hospitals and clinics are open on weekends. It is the first time since 87 cases were logged on Nov. 2 that the capital has seen infections in the double digits. But concerns remain over the strain on the medical system as the number of hospitalized patients has been decreasing at a slow pace.
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