September 26, Tuesday, 2023

1. Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi has hinted at the possibility of President Xi Jinping’s attendance at the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation summit in the US in November. At the news conference in Beijing on Tuesday, Wang unveiled a white paper titled “A Global Community of Shared Future; China’s Proposals and Actions.” He emphasized China’s commitment to working with other nations to create a beautiful future for humanity.”
2. Trial runs of a bullet train of the Hokuriku Shinkansen line have begun in an extended part of the line set to open in March. The new section links Kanazawa Prefecture and Tsuruga Station in neighboring Fukui Prefecture, both along the Sea of Japan Coast. 3. Nissan Motor has ramped up its electric vehicle strategy in Europe with a bold new target. It plans to sell EVs there by 2030. Nissan says that of the over one million EVs it has sold globally, one-third have been in Europe. The carmaker apparently hopes to get ahead of the competition as the continent speeds up its shift to EVs.

September 25, Monday, 2023

1. Japanese Prime Minister Kishida Fumio has mapped out a new economic stimulus package partly in response to the continued high cost of living. “We’ve come through the pandemic and everyone is now struggling with high prices,” Kishida said. “We want to implement economic measures to appropriately return to the public the increased tax revenues, which are the result of growth.” 2. This season’s first auction of blowfish has been held in the western Japanese city of Shimonoseki, heralding the arrival of the traditional winter delicacy on the market. The auction was held early Monsay morning at the Haedomari fish market, which handles largest amount of the wild torafugu variety in Japan.
3. Shipments of Chinese mitten crabs have started in the eastern province of Jiangsu in China. The seasonal delicacy is also known as Shanghai hairy crab. In China, it is popular to steam the crabs whole and dip the meat in vinegar flavored with ginger.

September 22, Friday, 2023

1. Japan’s Crown Prince and Princess Akishino have attended a ceremony marking the 50th anniversary of diplomatic ties between the country and Vietnam in its capital Hanoi. The two are now visiting Vietnam. In a speech at the ceremony on Thursday evening, the Crown Prince said the bilateral friendship has been nurtured over a long time through constant efforts by people of both countries. 2. Japan, Germany, Brazil and India have confirmed that they will work together to try to reform the United Nations Security Council. The foreign ministers of the four countries, known as the G4, met on Thursday in New York on the sidelines of the UN General Assembly session. The countries are seeking to secure permanent seats on the council. Japanese Foreign Minister Kamikawa Yoko and the other ministers agreed that it is becoming increasingly important to strengthen the functions of the United Nations, due to Russia’s ongoing aggression against Ukraine.
3. Policymakers at the Bank of Japan have decided to leave the central bank’s easing program unchanged as they wrapped up their two-day meeting on Friday. Investors are now focusing on whether BOJ Governor Ueda Kazuo will offer any fresh signals on the timing of a policy shift at his news conference scheduled after the meeting.

September 21, Thursday, 2023

1. British Foreign Secretary James Cleverly says Russia’s invasion of Ukraine is causing harm to people worldwide. He emphasized the need for the United Nations to undergo reform as the Security Council is not functioning as it should. Cleverly said Ukraine’s counteroffensive against Russia has been slower than some would like, but the country was being careful to minimize casualties. He noted that Ukraine has achieved success in that regard. He also stated that the UK will continue to provide support, assessing Ukraine’s weapons needs.
2. Japanese Prime Minister Kishida Fumio has stressed the need for United Nations reform at a time when the rule of law is being challenged by Russia’s aggression in Ukraine. 3. Ukraine and Russia exchanged criticism at a special session of the UN Security Council, held to address the situation in Ukraine. The meeting took place at the UN headquarters in New York on Wednesday alongside the General Assembly. Attendees included Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskky, Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov, Japanese Prime Minister Kishida Fumio and US Secretary of State Antony Blinken.

September 20, Wednesday, 2023

1. US President Joe Biden has hosted the first summit between his country and five Central Asian countries. The meeting, dubbed C5+1, was held in New York on Tuesday on the sidelines of the UN General Assembly. Along with Biden, the leaders of Kazakhstan, the Kyrgyz Republic, Tajikistan Turkmenistan and Uzbekistan attended the meeting. 2. Japan’s Prime Minister Kishida Fumio has called for international cooperation in tackling a range of complex problems the global community is facing in his speech at the UN General Assembly. He also urged reform of the United Nations.
3. Japanese transport officials are predicting that the country will be short of over 30,000 bus drivers by fiscal 2030.

September 19, Tuesday, 2023

1. The Group of Seven foreign ministers have issued a statement denouncing Russia’s invasion of Ukraine and calling for the immediate and unconditional withdrawal of Russian forces. The top diplomats met for about two hours on Monday on the sidelines of the UN General Assembly in New York. 2. The Polish government is stepping up its border security as more people try to illegally enter Poland from Belarus. The two countries share a 400-kilometer border and Poland suspects Belarus is deliberately using migrants to destabilize the area. A spokesperson with the Polish Border Guard told NHK that not a single day passes without illegal border crossings. 3. An annual competition featuring dozens of giant pumpkins harvested from across Japan was held on Shodoshima Island, western Japan. The 37th giant pumpkin contest was held in the town of Tonosho in Kagawa Prefecture on Sunday.

September 18, Monday, 2023

1. North Korea says its leader Kim Jong Un’s latest visit to Russia has brought about a radical new turn in the history of the development of bilateral ties. Kim began his journey home after visiting Far Eastern Federal University and other places in Russia’s far eastern city of Vladivostok on Sunday. 2. Ukrainian forces say they have recaptured another village in the eastern region of Donetsk has they intensify counteroffensives in south and east of the country. The commander of Ukraine’s ground forces, Oleksandr Syrskyi, announced on social media on Sunday that his troops retook the village of Klischiivka about six kilometers southwest of the contested city of Bakhmut. 3. At the men’s Rugby World Cup in France, Japan lost to England in the Brave Blossoms’ second Pool D fixture. The game on Sunday night in Nice finished 34-12 to England.

September 15, Friday, 2023

1. Japanese police are searching the headquarters of used car dealer chain Bigmotor in relation to alleged used of weed killer leading to deaths of trees along sidewalks outside some of its shops. The firm is under scrutiny for allegedly filing fraudulent insurance claims after carrying out unnecessary repair work. Tree deaths by weed killer or other means near Bigmotor outlets have also drawn public attention.
2. Shipments of top-quality bigeye tuna have begun in the northeastern Japanese city of Shiogama, Miyagi Prefecture. The Sanriku Shiogama Higashimono brand name is given to premium bigeye tuna unloaded at the market from early autumn to winter. The selection criteria include freshness and fattiness.
3. Japanese musician Yoshiki has left prints of his hands and feet in cement in a ceremony at a Hollywood theater. He’s the first Japanese to leave his mark alongside those of legendary stars. The imprint ceremony for the member of the popular rock band X Japan took place at the TCL Chinese Theatre on Thursday.

September 14, Thursday, 2023

1. North Korea says the country’s leader Kim Jong Un sand Russian President Vladimir Putin reached a “satisfactory agreement” on important issues in their summit talks on Wednesday. Putin also reportedly accepted an invitation to visit North Korea at a convenient time. 2. Japan’s new Foreign Minister Kamikawa Yoko says she hopes to build trust with her global counterparts at the UN General Assembly next week. She wants to visit New York next week to attend the UN General Assembly session and the G7 Foreign Ministers’ meeting. 3. Japan Airlines is using a sustainable aviation fuel, or SAF, on one of its international flights during a week-long trial. SAF accounts for 11 percent of the fuel on flight JL6 from Tokyo’s Haneda Airport to New York City. The carrier’s goal is for SAF to make up 1 percent of the fuel burned on all its flights by 2025. The ratio is slated to rise to 10 percent by 2030.

September 13, Wednesday, 2023

1. Japan’s Prime Minister Kishida Fumio will reshuffle his Cabinet on Wednesday evening. He made Liberal Democratic Party executive appointments earlier in the day. Kishida plans to keep Chief Cabinet Secretary Matsuo Hirokazu and Finance Minister Suzuki Shunichi in their current positions to maintain his administration framework.
2. Multiple Russian media have reported that President Vladimir Putin will meet with North Korean leader Kim Jong Un on Wednesday at a space center in Russia’s far eastern region of Amur. 3. Russian President Vladimir Putin and North Korean leader Kim Jong Un exchanged words in front of reporters on Wednesday at the start of their summit in the Russian Far East. Putin stressed the need to discuss economic cooperation, humanitarian issues and regional affairs. Kim said the two countries have much to cooperate on, such as in politics and culture, to meet the expectations of their people.