Quotes: US MENA   Enter Symbol: NewsLetter: Search: advanced

Japanese premier resilient, resolute as election loss looms  Join our daily free Newsletter

MENAFN - Arab News - 06/12/2012

No. of Ratings : 0
Add to Mixx!


(MENAFN - Arab News) With less than two weeks left to the Dec. 16 election, Japan's Prime Minister Yoshihiko Noda is displaying the same quiet determination that helped him clinch a breakthrough deal on his controversial plan to raise the country's sales tax.

It seems to be working.

Noda, who once likened himself to an unattractive but hard-working "dojo" bottom-feeding fish, is just behind opposition leader Shinzo Abe in individual ratings. His Democratic Party of Japan is also narrowing an albeit large gap with Abe's Liberal Democratic Party.

"I'm determined to do my utmost and fight to the bitter end ... so that the Democratic Party can stay in power," Noda told reporters on Monday, the eve of the official kick-off of campaigning in voting districts. A comeback from behind would be nothing short of a political miracle. But a solid election result could keep Noda's party in play since the vote is unlikely to produce a clear winner, thus requiring some form of a coalition to be formed.

Last week Noda, 55, became the longest serving Japanese prime minister since Junichiro Koizumi stepped down in 2006 after five years in office - a testimony to his staying power, grit and underrated political acumen.
When Noda took over in September 2011 as Japan's sixth prime minister in five years, few thought he would last more than a year or that he would accomplish much.

But the former finance minister and career lawmaker not only hung in there, he also pushed through a plan to raise the sales tax to help fund the swelling social security costs of the ageing nation - the most significant move in years to pare back rising public debt levels.

Successive leaders had shied away from tackling the politically hot issue for fear of a voter backlash.

He accomplished the feat despite being dealt a weak hand. The party was torn by internal divisions and it lacked control of parliament after losing upper house elections in 2010.

"He's got a major change in the tax system under his belt and anyone who does objective analysis has to give him credit for that," said Jesper Koll, head of equity research at JPMorgan Chase in Tokyo.

In style, the workmanlike Noda is nothing like the charismatic Koizumi, but his aides have said he showed similar toughness and willingness to take risks.
Noda also appeals to the public with his "everyman" image. As the son of a military man, he is not one of Japan's "hereditary politicians" like Abe, who is a former prime minister and the grandson of a premier. The black-belt judo practitioner and a fan of pro wrestling, who honed his political oratory skills on a commuter train platform, said last week he was glad to be back on the campaign trail and connecting with people.

"I stood at curb side in front of a train station in Tama and gave a political speech, which is something I hadn't done in quite some time," Noda wrote in his blog. "For me, who for 25 years held a microphone for three hours every morning in Funabashi appealing to the passersby, I feel that I came back to my roots in spirit."

But while Noda showed that it was possible to break Japan's persistent policy gridlock and get things done, he and his party have paid a steep price. His dogged pursuit of the tax plan and compromises with the opposition deepened divisions within his party that led to a split and the desertion of dozens of lawmakers.

Some say the Democrats became a smaller, but more coherent party after its former leader and Noda's nemesis, Ichiro Ozawa, left with a group of followers angered by the tax hike plan.

Noda's supporters also point out that the Democrats were bound to disappoint after they swept to power in 2009, riding a wave of public discontent over more than half a century of nearly unbroken rule by Abe's party, the LDP.


  MENA News Headlines
Apr 23 2014Omantel launches service package for youth ,MENAFN
(MENAFN) Omantel announced launching 'Ozone' plan, a new package designed especially for the youth. This comes with the company"s constant efforts to enhance the communication needs of its customers, ...

Apr 23 2014Dh154 billion for Arabtec projects ,Khaleej Times
(MENAFN - Khaleej Times) Arabtec will spend dh140 billion on building one million low-cost houses in egypt and dh14 billion on five mixed-use residential projects in abu dhabi and dubai its chief ...

Apr 23 2014?Titli? makers excited about Cannes selection ,Khaleej Times
(MENAFN - Khaleej Times) The movie about the badlands of delhi?s dystopic underbelly will be in competition as part of the un certain regard section of the 67th cannes film gala to be held may ...

Apr 23 2014Saudi- Yaroub Bashraheel: In search of peace ... underwater ,Arab News
(MENAFN - Arab News) You've heard of diving snorkeling and other water activities but rarely has anyone heard of free-diving. it's a form of diving underwater without the aid of any breathing ...

Apr 23 2014Saudi- Schneider highlights intelligent health care solutions at forum ,Arab News
(MENAFN - Arab News) Schneider electric a global specialist in energy management is set to showcase its leadership in intelligent health care solutions at the second saudi forum for planning and ...

Apr 23 2014Saudi- Divorcees can seek housing ,Arab News
(MENAFN - Arab News) The kingdom will accept applications from saudi divorced women and widows for financial and housing support said justice minister muhammad al-issa.al-issa called on applicants ...

Apr 23 2014Saudi- New passport office opens at Red Sea Mall ,Arab News
(MENAFN - Arab News) The passport department has opened a new office for citizens and residents at the red sea mall.gen. abdul rahman bin abdullah al-tuwairki deputy director general of the ...

Apr 23 2014Kowait- Police deportation powers curbed ,Arab Times
(MENAFN - Arab Times) Kuwait city april 3 (afp): kuwaiti police will no longer be able to deport expatriates without interior ministry approval under new rules published thursday after officers ...

Apr 23 2014Kowait- Amiri Diwan urges all off tape case ,Arab Times
(MENAFN - Arab Times)  kuwait city april 9 (agencies): the amiri diwan has called on everybody to steer clear of the controversial tape issue and let the public prosecution take the necessary ...

Apr 23 2014Saudi Savola Group revenue up 43 pct in Q1 ,MENAFN
(MENAFN) Saudi Arabia's Savola Group registered a 43 percent increase in profits in the first quarter, well over expectations of analysts, Arabian Business reported. According to a statement to ...

Apr 23 2014Tamouh steps up activity on projects ,Khaleej Times
(MENAFN - Khaleej Times) Abu dhabi-based real-estate developer tamouh has scaled up construction activity on all of its announced reem island projects to meet the rising demand for prime spaces in ...

Apr 23 2014Dewa and GE explore collaboration opportunities ,Khaleej Times
(MENAFN - Khaleej Times) Saeed mohammed al tayer managing director and chief executive officer of the dubai electricity and water authority (dewa) recently received a ge delegation to explore ...

Apr 23 2014Sale of Gate Towers penthouses launched ,Khaleej Times
(MENAFN - Khaleej Times) Aldar properties has launched the sale of 21 exclusive duplex penthouse apartments at gate towers the penthouse collection in shams abu dhabi on al reem island. one of ...

Apr 23 2014ADCB profit grows 26% in first quarter ,Khaleej Times
(MENAFN - Khaleej Times) Abu dhabi commercial bank?s profit grew 26 per cent in the first quarter of the year to dh1. however net profit rose 22 per cent year-on-year. non-interest income was 24 ...

Apr 23 2014'Piles and piles' of bodies in S. Sudan ,Arab News
(MENAFN - Arab News) Nairobi: gunmen who targeted both children and the elderly left 'piles and piles" of bodies — many of those in a mosque — in a provincial capital in south sudan the un's top ...

Apr 23 2014Local international companies come out in force ,Khaleej Times
(MENAFN - Khaleej Times) Cityscape abu dhabi has started showing stronger interest from property developers who have showcased their upcoming projects. the three-day realty show was opened by ...

Apr 23 2014Here?s your chance to share screen space with SRK ,Khaleej Times
(MENAFN - Khaleej Times) Groupon india has joined hands with srk?s red chillies entertainment to give fans a chance to feature with the superstar in his upcoming film ?happy new year?. if you ...

Apr 23 2014Saudi- Noha Al-Sharif — an expert in Islamic sculpture ,Arab News
(MENAFN - Arab News) Saudi sculptress noha al-sharif is known for her islamic inspired sculptures that reflect both religion and lifestyle. the concept of modern art attracted her to this medium ...

Apr 23 2014ADCB NIC in Dh950 million deal ,Khaleej Times
(MENAFN - Khaleej Times) Abu dhabi commercial bank or adcb this week inked a dh950 million term facility to provide national investment corporation or nic the developer of the breakwater area in ...

Apr 23 2014Gitex Shopper Spring 2014 to open doors today ,Khaleej Times
(MENAFN - Khaleej Times) Gitex shopper spring 2014 is set to open doors today with best bargains on latest tech products along with millions of dirhams worth of prizes during the four-day ...


Click to Apply



Middle East North Africa - Financial Network

MENAFN News Market Data Countries Tools Section  

Middle East North Africa - Financial Network

Main News
News By Industry
News By Country
Marketwatch News
UPI News
Comtex News

IPO News
Islamic Finance News
Private Equity News

How-To Guides
Technology Section

Travel Section

Search News

Market Indices
Quotes & Charts

Global Indices
Arab Indices

US Markets Details


Oil & Energy

Currencies Cross Rates
Currencies Updates
Currency Converter

USA Stocks
Arab Stocks

Saudi Arabia 

Investment Game
Economic Calendar
Financial Glossary

Portfolio Tracker


Financial Calculators

RSS Feeds [XML]

Corporate Monitor


Real Estate
Submit Your Property

Arab Research
Buy a Research

Press Releases
Submit your PR

Join Newsletters

© 2000 menafn.com All Rights Reserved.  Terms of Service | Privacy Policy | Contact Us | Advertise | About MENAFN | Career Opportunities | Feedback | Help