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JAPAN

Japan's House of Representatives has voted down a motion of no confidence submitted against the Suga Cabinet by the opposition, an unsurprising result given the large majority held by PM Yoshihide Suga's Liberal Democratic Party (LDP).

  • Suga had previously threatened to dissolve parliament and call snap elections if a no confidence motion was submitted, but the Constitutional Democratic Party and three other opposition parties called his bluff and in the end Suga did not follow through on the threat.
  • The opposition had sought to extend the parliamentary term by three months to allow for debate on COVID-19 measures as well as the hosting of the Olympic Games, but this was turned down by the gov't.
  • Approval ratings for Suga and the gov't remain in the doldrums as public ire at the gov'ts handling of the pandemic and concerns about the Olympic Games continue to damage perceptions of Suga's capability.
  • The major test for Suga comes ahead of the election (which must be held by 22 October 2021) in the form of the prime ministerial candidate selection for the LDP. Should Suga's approval ratings decline further he could find the party's various factions seeking to replace him with a more popular candidate.
MNI London Bureau | +44 203-865-0981 | tom.lake@marketnews.com

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