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Highlights of Japan-related events scheduled for April 1-7

  • March 31, 2019
  • , Kyodo News , 01:15 p.m.
  • English Press

TOKYO – Highlights of Japan-related events for April 1-7:


April 1 (MON)

— Government to announce new era name for use from May 1 when Crown Prince Naruhito becomes emperor, taking over from his father Emperor Akihito, set to abdicate on April 30 after 30 years of reign. Chief Cabinet Secretary Yoshihide Suga to unveil new name, or “gengo,” and Prime Minister Shinzo Abe will explain meaning.


— Japan to launch new visa system to open doors to more foreign workers to address labor crunch in departure from traditional tight controls on immigration. New immigration agency will manage and support incoming foreigners to work and live in Japan. Government expects to receive up to 345,000 foreign workers over five years.


— Bank of Japan to release quarterly Tankan business sentiment survey. Business confidence among major manufacturers is expected to fall for first time in two quarters amid concern about slackening overseas demand and domestic production as China’s growth slows.


— Law to promote work-style reform to take effect. Major changes include putting legal cap on overtime work as issue of “karoshi,” or death from overwork, grabbed attention following suicide of overworked female worker at major advertising agency.


— Idemitsu Kosan and Showa Shell Sekiyu to merge, creating new oil giant in realignment of domestic oil wholesale industry.


— Nippon Steel & Sumitomo Metal Corp. to change name to Nippon Steel Corp.


April 2 (TUES)

— Japan, Russia to hold strategic dialogue in Tokyo.


April 3 (WED)

— No major events.


April 4 (THURS)

— Japan Automobile Dealers Association to release auto sales by model for March, fiscal 2018.


April 5 (FRI)

— Hayabusa2 space probe to artificially create crater by shooting projectile into asteroid Ryugu. If successful, Hayabusa2 plans to land and collect subsurface samples. Ryugu, 340 million kilometers away from Earth, is believed to contain organic substances and water with remnants of the primitive solar system. Hayabusa2 is due to return with samples in December 2020.


— Ministry of Internal Affairs and Communications to release average household spending data for February.


— Cabinet Office to release preliminary composite indexes of economic indicators for February.


April 6 (SAT)

— No major events.


April 7 (SUN)

— Local elections will be held to choose 11 governors and six mayors, with outcome set to impact House of Councillors election this summer. Osaka gubernatorial and Osaka mayoral elections will also be held after former governor and city major resigned earlier in March, seeking to switch jobs to get full four-year terms and push for their political party’s goal of streamlining Osaka administrations by creating metropolis.

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