May 15, Wednesday, 2024

1. Russian President Vladimir Putin has told a Chinese media outlet that he is “open to a dialogue on Ukraine.” He has also indicated that Moscow welcomes Beijing’s involvement in the effort to resolve the conflict.
2. A group of private economists believe that Japan’s economy shrank in the January-to-March quarter. The country’s GDP figures will be released by the government on Thursday. Observers will be paying attention to consumer spending, which accounts for more than half of Japan’s GDP. 3. Wednesday marks 50 years since Seven-Eleven Japan opened its first convenience store outlet. Seven-Eleven Japan is the country’s first full-fledged convenience store chain employing a franchise system to allow store owners to operate outlets. The chain launched its first store in Tokyo’s Toyosu area in 1974. Company President Nagamatsu Fumihiko said the chain aims to further advance the concept of convenience.