Japanese Prime Minister dissolves Diet’s lower house paving the way for general election; Japan-China-South Korea to declare the beginning of negotiations to conclude a trilateral FTA; Japan and North Korea agree to continue talks on the abduction issue
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  • Japanese Prime Minister Yoshihiko Noda dissolved the House of Representatives on November 16. The general election is scheduled to be held on December 16 while official campaign for the election is to start from December 4. 1

    On the sidelines of the upcoming East Asia Summit to be held in Cambodia, Japan, China and South Korea are to formally announce the beginning of negotiations to conclude a trilateral FTA. Such an FTA is expected to create a major trade bloc among the three major East Asia states that together account for aout20% of the global gross domestic product. 2

    During the recently concluded two-day talks between senior diplomats from Japan and North Korean at Ulan Bator (Mongolia), the two sides agreed to continue holding talks on the abduction of Japanese citizens by North Korean agents decades ago. The next round of the bilateral talk is expected to be held as soon as possible. 3