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OPINION POLLS

Highlights of the March 2018 Jiji Press Public Opinion Poll

Questions & answers (%)

Figures in parentheses denote the results of the survey conducted on Feb. 9–12 (middle column) and the survey conducted on Jan. 12–15, 2018 (right column).

 

Q: Emperor Akihito will abdicate on April 30 next year and Crown Prince Naruhito will assume the throne as the new emperor on May 1. With this, the era name of “Heisei” will be replaced with a new one. When do you think it would be appropriate to announce the new era name? Select only one from the responses below.

 

In 2018

37.1

Between the beginning of next year and the ceremony celebrating 30 years of Emperor Akihito’s reign (Feb. 24, 2019)

32.9

After the ceremony celebrating 30 years of Emperor Akihito’s reign (Feb. 24, 2019)

19.5

Don’t know

10.5

 

Q: The Abe cabinet aims to have the “work-style reform” bill enacted during the current Diet session. The matter of expanding the areas subject to the discretionary labor system was shelved and deleted from the bill because it was revealed that the government survey data on the discretionary labor system was flawed. The bill will now include the introduction of caps on overtime hours, an “equal pay for equal work” system, and the “highly skilled professionals system,” which exempts from work-hour regulations certain highly specialized professionals that earn a high salary. Are you in favor of or opposed to the enactment of this work-style reform bill during the current Diet session?

 

In favor

26.6

Opposed

44.7

Don’t know

28.8

 

Q: The South Korean government has taken a forward-looking stance on holding inter-Korean summits since October 2007. Do you think that holding such summits will bring positive developments in the issue of North Korea’s nuclear weapon and missile programs? Which of the following is closest to your thinking?

 

It will bring positive developments

18.3

It will not bring positive developments

66.1

Can’t say either way + Don’t know

15.6

 

Q: In relation to the scandal over the sale of state-owned land to school operator Moritomo Gakuen, do you think National Tax Agency Commissioner Nobuhisa Sagawa, who, as director-general of the Finance Ministry’s Financial Bureau at the time of the land sale, said in response to Diet interpellations that all internal documents had been “discarded,” should be summoned to the Diet to testify? Select only one from the responses below.

 

He should be summoned to the Diet to testify

66.3

It is not necessary for him to be summoned to the Diet to testify

21.7

Can’t say either way + Don’t know

12.0

 

Q: How has your standard of living changed compared with this time last year?

 

 

March

(Feb.)

(Jan.)

It has improved greatly

0.3

(0.6)

(0.2)

It has improved somewhat

5.2

(5.2)

(5.4)

It has not changed

72.6

(74.4)

(74.8)

It has worsened somewhat

19.3

(17.5)

(17.5)

It has worsened greatly

2.0

(2.3)

(1.9)

Don’t know

0.5

(0.1)

(0.2)

 

Q: Do you think commodity prices have stabilized, will go up in the future, or will go down from now?

 

 

March

(Feb.)

(Jan.)

They have stabilized

13.8

(12.0)

(10.8)

They will go up in the future

74.2

(75.0)

(78.4)

They will go down from now

3.1

(3.9)

(2.5)

Don’t know

9.0

(9.1)

(8.3)

 

Q: How do you view the economy? Compared with last month, has it improved, remained the same, or worsened?

 

 

March

(Feb.)

(Jan.)

It has definitely improved

0.7

(0.3)

(0.3)

It has improved somewhat

6.9

(9.1)

(10.1)

It has remained the same

67.1

(67.3)

(65.2)

It has worsened somewhat

18.4

(18.2)

(18.4)

It has definitely worsened

1.7

(1.4)

(1.3)

Don’t know

5.1

(3.6)

(4.7)

 

Q: Do you think your lifestyle will improve or worsen in the future?

 

 

March

(Feb.)

(Jan.)

It will improve

10.0

(11.4)

(10.8)

It will remain the same

51.8

(52.5)

(54.4)

It will worsen

31.5

(31.2)

(28.9)

Don’t know

6.6

(4.9)

(6.0)

 

Q: Name up to three countries that you like.

 

 

March

(Feb.)

(Jan.)

United States of America

40.1

(39.8)

(38.7)

Russia

2.7

(2.6)

(2.1)

United Kingdom

35.4

(37.4)

(37.5)

France

36.3

(37.2)

(36.1)

Germany

31.1

(32.4)

(33.0)

Switzerland

40.6

(37.0)

(38.7)

India

6.9

(7.7)

(6.4)

China

2.0

(2.0)

(2.0)

South Korea

4.7

(4.9)

(5.0)

North Korea

0.2

(0.2)

(0.2)

None/Don’t know

20.0

(19.1)

(20.7)

             Simple total

220.0

(220.2)

(220.6)

 

Q: Name up to three countries that you dislike.

 

 

March

(Feb.)

(Jan.)

United States of America

 6.7

(4.0)

(4.8)

Russia

17.7

(17.5)

 (17.1)

United Kingdom

1.1

(0.5)

 (1.0)

France

0.7

(0.4)

 (0.4)

Germany

1.1

(0.9)

 (0.5)

Switzerland

0.3

(0.4)

 (0.6)

India

1.6

(2.0)

 (2.3)

China

61.7

(62.0)

(63.4)

South Korea

43.5

(40.6)

(45.2)

North Korea

82.1

(84.8)

(86.7)

None/Don’t know

11.0

(10.7)

(8.5)

             Simple total

227.5

(223.8)

(230.5)

 

Q: Which country or region do you think will become important for Japan as a bilateral relationship over the next five years? Select up to three from the below.

 

 

March

(Feb.)

(Jan.)

United States of America

76.0

(75.3)

(74.0)

Canada

3.5

(3.3)

(3.7)

Russia

14.7

(17.4)

(15.3)

Other FSU (former Soviet Union)

0.8

(0.5)

(1.2)

Europe

13.9

(12.1)

(14.3)

India

14.2

(16.5)

(15.9)

China

54.7

(55.4)

(55.5)

Taiwan

6.2

(5.9)

(7.0)

South Korea

19.1

(18.2)

(17.5)

North Korea

17.4

(14.7)

(16.4)

Southeast Asia 

15.4

(16.1)

(14.7)

Latin America

2.1

(2.1)

(1.7)

Middle East

4.4

(2.7)

(4.2)

Africa

2.4

(2.9)

(4.5)

Oceania

0.5

(1.0)

(1.4)

Don’t know

7.1

(6.5)

(7.1)

             Simple total

252.2

(250.5)

(254.4)

 

Polling methodology (March 2018): The survey was conducted over the four-day period of March 9–12 through individual interviews. For the survey, a total of 2,000 people were sampled from among men and women, aged 18 and over, across the nation on a stratified two-stage random-sampling basis. Valid responses were received from 1,227 people for a valid response rate of 61.4%.

 

Polling methodology (February 2018): The survey was conducted over the four-day period of Feb. 9–12 through individual interviews. For the survey, a total of 2,000 people were sampled from among men and women, aged 18 and over, across the nation on a stratified two-stage random-sampling basis. Valid responses were received from 1,237 people for a valid response rate of 61.9%.

 

Polling methodology (January 2018): The survey was conducted over the four-day period of Jan. 12–15 through individual interviews. For the survey, a total of 2,000 people were sampled from among men and women, aged 18 and over, across the nation on a stratified two-stage random-sampling basis. Valid responses were received from 1,260 people for a valid response rate of 63.0%.

 

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