NHK gave top play to a report on the launch of an Epsilon-3 rocket from the JAXA Uchinoura Space Center in Kagoshima this morning. NTV led with a report on problems related to tickets for the figure skating events at the PyeongChang Olympics. TBS gave top play to a report that the Koreas have agreed to field a joint women’s ice hockey team in the Olympics. TV Asahi reported that sumo grand champion Hakuho has already suffered two losses in the New Year Grand Sumo Tournament. Fuji TV led with a report that many subway train cars in Tokyo have recently been defaced with graffiti.
Top stories in national dailies included an agreement between the Koreas to field a joint women’s ice hockey team for the Olympics (Mainichi, Yomiuri); a labor standards inspection office’s discovery of inappropriate labor-management agreements at a hospital (Asahi); moves by some local municipalities to scale back public facilities in response to the declining population (Nikkei); and final arrangements by the 11 nations discussing a TPP agreement to freeze 22 items (Sankei).