FRONT PAGE NEWS

19 February 2019
Immigration Bureau's relaxed visa policy has boosted tourism from southeast Asia, but it seems to have come with an unwanted side-effect. (soranews24.com)
Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe is not saying whether or not he nominated Donald Trump for this year's Nobel Peace Prize, but the question may be moot: the U.S. president has been put forward by others for the prestigious award. (Japan Today)
The health ministry on Monday approved the world's first clinical test in which artificially derived stem cells will be used to treat patients with spinal cord injuries. (Japan Times)
A movie by the Japanese director Hikari picked up two awards at the Berlin International Film Festival on Saturday. "37 Seconds" won the Panorama Audience Award and the CICAE Art Cinema Award. (NHK)
By changing his lead attorney from a former prosecutor known as "the breaker" to a hotshot trial lawyer nicknamed "the acquitter", Carlos Ghosn plans a defense in his own image -- combative and media-savvy, experts say. (Japan Today)




Feb 19
Police on Monday arrested a truck driver for allegedly driving off with a man clinging to the side of his vehicle following a road rage incident in Miyagi Prefecture last June. (Japan Times)
Feb 19
Tokyo Metropolitan Police have arrested a 41-year-old man who while drunk is suspected of gashing more than one dozen luxury automobiles in Ota Ward last month, reports Nippon News Network (tokyoreporter.com)
Feb 19
Ibaraki Prefectural Police believe a male temporary employee at a research center for industrial machinery manufacturer Kubota Corp. stabbed another employee before slashing himself on Sunday, reports TV Asahi (tokyoreporter.com)
Feb 18
A movie by the Japanese director Hikari picked up two awards at the Berlin International Film Festival on Saturday. "37 Seconds" won the Panorama Audience Award and the CICAE Art Cinema Award. (NHK)
Feb 18
A 43-year-old employee of the Ministry of Land, Infrastructure, Transport and Tourism has been arrested for allegedly using his smartphone to film up the skirt of a high school girl on a train. (Japan Today)

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Feb 18
By changing his lead attorney from a former prosecutor known as "the breaker" to a hotshot trial lawyer nicknamed "the acquitter", Carlos Ghosn plans a defense in his own image -- combative and media-savvy, experts say. (Japan Today)
Feb 17
With 125 million citizens and the world's third largest GDP, Japan is an important market force. (newsonjapan.com)
Feb 16
Soft drink companies in Japan have put aside their long-held fear of losing market shares, moving to raise prices amid soaring expenses for labor and materials. (Nikkei)
Feb 12
Convenience store operator Family Mart Co. on Monday announced the dismissal of a male employee after the emergence of a video showing him licking items, the latest of several similar incidents involving a food-related company in the last week, reports TV Asahi (Feb. 12). (tokyoreporter.com)
Feb 09
The parent company of All Nippon Airways will invest in the operator of Philippine Airlines to take advantage of growing demand for travel in Asia. (NHK)

[more business news…]           [business blogs…]


Feb 10
Japan's national debt has reached a new high, despite government efforts to restore fiscal health. (NHK)
Feb 01
A comprehensive free trade deal between Japan and the European Union has come into force. The pact will eventually remove tariffs on more than 90 percent of imports from both sides and liberalize rules in a broad spectrum of fields. (NHK)
Jan 31
Whatever your stance, Brexit has and will continue to raise questions than answers as we move closer to the March 29, 2019, deadline. With the future of Britain and Europe only slightly clearer now than it was two years ago, political leaders are scrambling for position ahead of the forthcoming split. (newsonjapan.com)
Jan 31
To mark the ascension of Japan's new emperor, the government has declared an unprecedented 10-day holiday from late April to early May, worrying investors, who say a market shutdown could cause disruption and unsettle the yen. (Japan Today)
Jan 30
The Bank of Japan has given a glimpse into the dark days it faced following the 2008 collapse of Lehman Brothers. Officials released the minutes from their meetings after the crash. (NHK)

[more economy news…]


Feb 19
Immigration Bureau's relaxed visa policy has boosted tourism from southeast Asia, but it seems to have come with an unwanted side-effect. (soranews24.com)
Feb 19
Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe is not saying whether or not he nominated Donald Trump for this year's Nobel Peace Prize, but the question may be moot: the U.S. president has been put forward by others for the prestigious award. (Japan Today)
Feb 15
The Japanese government has mapped out a bill to officially recognize the Ainu ethnic minority as an indigenous people of Japan. (NHK)
Feb 09
The government confirmed Friday that it will follow the procedures taken to pick the current era name of Heisei in choosing a name for the new era. (Japan Times)
Feb 08
Japan's Prime Minister Shinzo Abe says he's determined to settle the country's territorial issue with Russia and conclude a peace treaty. (NHK)

[more politics news…]


Feb 17
Police in Koga, Ibaraki Prefecture, said Saturday they have arrested a 35-year-old woman on suspicion of abusing her six-year-old daughter by hitting her with a futon beater. (Japan Today)
Feb 08
A UN committee has urged the Japanese government to legally ban corporal punishment of children at home. (NHK)
Feb 07
The father of a 10-year-old girl who died last month at their home near Tokyo forced her to write a letter stating he did not hit her so she would be returned home, a child welfare center said Tuesday, revealing more apparent missteps by authorities in protecting her life. (Japan Today)
Feb 04
Tokyo’s Nakano Ward said Friday that it has decided to allow female students at all municipal junior high schools to pick pants for their uniform from April. (the-japan-news.com)
Jan 31
In a first for Japan, the city of Chiba held a ceremony Tuesday to issue certificates recognizing the partnerships of sexual minority and common-law couples. (Japan Today)

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Feb 19
The health ministry on Monday approved the world's first clinical test in which artificially derived stem cells will be used to treat patients with spinal cord injuries. (Japan Times)
Feb 18
Two rare deep-sea oarfish caught in fixed nets off Toya port on the southwest side of Okinawa stunned the local fishing community last month for simply being alive. (Japan Times)
Feb 13
A new outbreak of swine fever has been confirmed on a pig farm in Aichi Prefecture, central Japan. It is the third farm in the prefecture to be hit by the highly contagious disease. (NHK)
Feb 09
A developmental carriage from the next-generation bullet train has been shown to the media in western Japan. (NHK)
Feb 09
Fish may not be as stupid as they appear, as a study suggests they can recognise themselves in a mirror. (dailymail.co.uk)

[more sci-tech news…]           [sci-tech blogs…]


Feb 18
Ichiro Suzuki fluidly went through a variety of stretches on the floor in the Seattle Mariners clubhouse even before going onto the field. Once outside, he smoothly went through fielding, hitting and baserunning drills. (Japan Times)
Feb 06
Police have decided not seek an indictment against former coaches of Nihon University’s American football team over accusations that they instructed a player to commit a dangerous tackle on an opponent, investigative sources said Tuesday. (Japan Times)
Jan 27
Japan's Naomi Osaka has become the new women's world number one after winning the Australian Open final against Petra Kvitova in three gripping sets at Melbourne Park. (abc.net.au)
Jan 27
Grand champion Hakuho has withdrawn from the ongoing New Year Grand Sumo Tournament due to injuries, his stablemaster announced Saturday, ending his bid for a record-extending 42nd top division championship. (Kyodo)
Jan 25
Japan's Naomi Osaka never made it past the fourth round at any of the first 10 Grand Slam tournaments of her career. Now, still just 21, she's suddenly on the verge of a second consecutive major championship. (Japan Today)

[more sports news…]


Feb 19
Visitors to a village near Mount Fuji and its residents were rewarded with a dazzling spectacle on Monday. (NHK)
Feb 18
People are enjoying the first signs of spring at an annual plum flower festival at the Kairakuen garden in Mito City, north of Tokyo. (NHK)
Feb 17
The Royal Express is coming to Hokkaido, but if you can't wait, it's already running in the Tokyo area. (soranews24.com)
Feb 16
Reservations for travel overseas are surging for this year's 10-day Golden Week period, during which the Imperial succession is set to take place, according to a JTB Corp. official. (Japan Times)
Feb 16
A fire broke out at a warehouse in Tokyo on Tuesday afternoon leaving three men dead and another man injured, while some flights at nearby Haneda airport were also disrupted by the incident. (Kyodo)

[more travel news…]           [travel blogs…]


Feb 18
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Hay fever season officially started in Tokyo last week, according to an NHK article posted on February 13. Not only has it started five days earlier than average, but they also discovered 20% more airborne allergens in the air than normal. This me...

Feb 18

Japan's onsen (温泉) or natural hot springs, have been a part of Japanese culture for thousands of years. Traditionally, people with tattoos were banned from entering onsen in Japan. However, in recent years, more and more onsen facilities are d...

Feb 18
J-FestGuide_Omatsuri finder app

Festivals (matsuri , 祭り in Japanese) are an integral part of Japanese culture. Every year in Japan, there are thousands of festivals held all across the country, and they come in many different varieties. Fire festivals in particular are incre...

Feb 17
Piracy is a serious problem. Piracy causes heavy damage to copyright holders and content business. The amount of damage for manga and animation in Japan is about JPY 200 billion (USD 1.8 billion), according to a government survey in 2014.

In order ...
Feb 16

Learning and memorizing Japanese kana can be a grueling process. What's more: when you've finished mastering hiragana, you then have to learn katakana. Thanks for having two alphabets, Japan. If dry memorization isn't your game — talk about fore...

Feb 15

Are you suffering from freezing fingers and aching bones this winter? Feeling a bit under the weather? Luckily, you're living in a country that has the perfect antidote to cold bodies and the winter blues: dipping your entire body in a mineral-ric...

Feb 15
Japanese people love animals, right? The country has a booming pet industry and Tokyoites can be seen pushing dogs with ribbons in their fur in strollers through the capital's parks. Farm animals in Japan unfortunately face a comparatively lacklus...
Feb 15
Starbucks sakura themed drinks and products for 2019

Few things come and go as fleetingly as Japanese cherry blossoms, or sakura. These harbingers of spring blossom from Japan's national tree, and, after a short week or two of gracing us with their beauty, they fall to make way for much less attract...

Feb 14

February 14th is Valentine's Day! In Japan, Valentine's Day is a chance for women to show their appreciation to the different men in their lives. Here's what the massive $800 million Valentine's Day industry looks like in Japan.

Origins

Vale...

Feb 14

I don't care for Valentine's Day. Don't get me wrong, it's not that I'm anti-romance — I just hate capitalism.

The scourge of the controversial holiday is nauseating here in Japan. Saccharine displays take up every shop window weeks ahead of ti...

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