Tag Archives: Editorial

【Editorial】 Japan’s tourism boom an opportunity to expand agricultural income (Sept. 4, 2015)

  Waves of visitors from foreign countries are flocking to Japan, with their number approaching the 2 million mark on a monthly basis. Tourists, especially from Asian countries, are on the rise fueled by the weaker yen, relaxation in visa requirements and an increase in air routes and flights. In order to make this tourism boom a driving force to expand farmers’ income and revitalize rural villages, it is necessary to direct big-spending tourists to regional areas as repeaters. The government and the private sector should work together to take timely and sustainable measures to let it happen. According to the Japan Tourism Agency, the number of overseas tourists totaled … Continue reading

Posted in Food and Agriculture, Others | Tagged | 2 Comments

【Editorial】 Doubts remain over revised agricultural co-ops law (Aug. 29, 2015)

  The revised Agricultural Co-operative Society Law was passed in the Diet, marking a major shift in the structure of farm co-ops. Prime Minister Shinzo Abe’s administration regarded the bill as an important step to turn agriculture into a growth industry. We have pointed out numerous doubts and concerns over the objectives, contents and the impact of the revision, but they were never solved in the Diet deliberations. Farmer members of agricultural co-ops, or JAs, have not fully understood nor are fully convinced of how the law would be revised. We urge the government to continue revising the law so that it truly supports the JA group’s self-reform efforts and … Continue reading

Posted in Cooperatives, Food and Agriculture, TPP and FTA | Tagged | Leave a comment

【Editorial】 Government responsible for improving food self-sufficiency (Aug. 6, 2015)

  Japan’s food security has been threatened after World War II amid increasing pressure to liberalize its farm products market. 80 percent of the Japanese people believe it is necessary to raise the nation’s low food self-sufficiency rate. A number of reported problems involving the safety of imported agricultural products have prompted consumers to choose domestically-produced items. The government should be responsible for promoting agriculture to improve self-sufficiency and also ensure food safety. On top of that, the government should work on linking producers and consumers, and establish self-sufficient regions. Food self-sufficiency rate is an indicator that shows how much of the food consumed by the people of a country … Continue reading

Posted in Food and Agriculture | Tagged | 2 Comments

【Editorial】 Never allow the government to cross the red line in TPP: dairy farmers (Aug. 1, 2015)

  On Friday, July 31, as the negotiations under the Trans-Pacific Partnership free-trade talks entered a final stage, dairy farmers nationwide held a rally to urge the government to protect the domestic farm sector amid media reports that Japan is considering expanding the import quota for dairy products. We cannot possibly allow the government to rush to reach broad agreement on the talks along with the United States. If the situation proceeds as is, the government is highly likely to go against the Diet resolution calling for the protection of sensitive farm items. The government must respond to farmers’ voices. It should never make further concessions. The major concern in … Continue reading

Posted in Cooperatives, Food and Agriculture, TPP and FTA | Tagged | Leave a comment

【Editorial】 Trade Promotion Authority bill passed in Congress – Never let the government rush to follow U.S. in free-trade talks (June 26, 2015)

  The Trans-Pacific Partnership free-trade negotiations have reached the critical line. U.S. Senate has approved the Trade Promotion Authority bill, legislation that guarantees President Barack Obama to conclude trade agreements by a timely up-or-down vote by Congress. The bill now awaits Obama’s signature. This means ministers of the TPP member nations are more likely to strike a broad agreement when they meet in July. Through TPA, Congress outlines high-standard objectives and priorities for U.S. negotiators to pursue in trade liberalization agreements, which means U.S.’ negotiating stance is highly likely to become harsher. We should never allow the Japanese government to rush to conclusions without disclosing information or keeping the Diet … Continue reading

Posted in Food and Agriculture, TPP and FTA | Tagged | Leave a comment