Suga takes the helm

But what course will Japan’s new PM set, asks John Nilsson-Wright

The World Today Published 5 October 2020 3 minute READ

Dr John Nilsson-Wright

Former Korea Foundation Korea Fellow and Senior Fellow for Northeast Asia, Asia-Pacific Programme

A little like Britain’s Conservative party, Japan’s Liberal Democratic Party exists to govern, rather than being animated by a single ideological mission.

Always a broad church of competing ideas – in domestic affairs, at times favouring paternalistic interventionist government, or small-scale deregulation; in foreign policy, fluctuating between alliance-focused proactivism and UN-centered non-interventionism – the party has pursued different approaches depending on the political mood at home and the predisposition of individual leaders.

Now, in the aftermath of Shinzo Abe’s resignation as prime minister, it is worth considering where the country might be heading under its new leader, Yoshihide Suga.

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