TOKYO – Toshimitsu Motegi, appointed as new foreign minister, has won confidence from Prime Minister Shinzo Abe after reaching in principle a bilateral trade deal with the United States.
Shifting from his previous role as economic revitalization minister, Motegi will deal with an ongoing diplomatic feud with South Korea over trade policy and wartime history. He will also handle other pressing challenges such as those related to North Korea, China, Russia and Iran.
The 63-year-old had a diverse career before entering politics, having worked at trading house Marubeni Corp. and the Yomiuri Shimbun daily as a reporter before studying at Harvard University and becoming a management consultant at McKinsey and Co.
First elected to the House of Representatives in 1993 from his native Tochigi Prefecture and currently in his ninth term, Motegi has served as minister of economy, trade and industry and twice as the ruling Liberal Democratic Party’s policy chief under Abe.