February 16, Thursday, 2023 (1:30 p.m.) Newsline

1. Candidates to become the next head and deputy heads of the Bank of Japan are set to explain their ideas on Japanese economic policy to Lower House members on February 24. The government on Tuesday presented the Diet with the nominations of Ueda Kazuo as the new central bank governor and Himino Ryozo and Uchida Shinichi as deputy governors. The term of incumbent Governor Kuroda Haruhiko ends in early April.
2. A winter festival featuring huts made from snow has welcomed back tourists for the first time in three years in Akita Prefecture, northern Japan. The event is held every year in the city of Yokote on February 15 and 16. About 40 of the “kamakura” huts were built for the festival. 3. The Financial Times reports Western intelligence shows Russia is amassing aircraft close to the border with Ukraine. It said the move indicates Moscow is preparing to bolster its faltering land offensive. The paper says intelligence shared among NATO allies shows Russia is assembling both fixed-wing and rotary aircraft. The article notes that Russia has used its air forces sparingly, relying instead on long-range missiles, artillery and land-based troops.