(Yomiuri: February 13, 2015 – p. 1)
On Feb. 12, Prime Minister Shinzo Abe made his first policy speech to the plenary session of both houses of the Diet after the third Abe cabinet was launched. He emphasized his intent to push forward reform of the so-called “bedrock regulations.”
On agricultural cooperative reform, which Abe regards as the symbol of the reform of such regulations, he indicated that he will promote the branding and overseas marketing of agricultural products in order to “create a strong agricultural sector and increase farmers’ income.” In the area of electric power reform, he said that he will push for the separation of electric companies’ power generation and transmission divisions.
In terms of foreign and security policy, Abe stated that on the occasion of the 70th anniversary of the end of World War II this year, Japan will “raise the banner of ‘proactive contribution to peace’ even higher.” With regard to legislative measures to authorize the limited exercise of the right to collective self-defense, he vowed to “develop security legislation that enables seamless responses to any situations.” However, he limited himself to calling for “deepening public discussion” on constitutional revision. (Abridged)
[English translation of full text of PM Abe’s policy speech to the 189th Diet session, Feb. 12, 2015]