63% of election candidates oppose Japan’s participation in TPP

PTI Tokyo | Updated on December 03, 2012 Published on December 03, 2012

Nearly two-thirds of those planning to run in the upcoming December 16 general election oppose Japan’s participation in a trans-Pacific free trade bloc under which all tariffs would be eliminated in principle, while 40.3 per cent believe Japan should seek to eliminate nuclear power generation soon, according to a survey.

While 63.2 per cent of respondents in the survey oppose Japan’s participation in talks on the Trans-Pacific Partnership Agreement, 30.8 per cent said they support it, claims Kyodo News survey.

Prime Minister Yoshihiko Noda of the ruling Democratic Part of Japan has been showing a positive stance on Japan’s participation. However, 27.0 per cent running on the DPJ’s ticket said they are against the TPP, while 56.5 per cent echoed Noda’s stance.

Those opposed to the TPP accounted for 82.7 per cent of Liberal Democratic Party candidates, 96.9 per cent of the Tomorrow Party of Japan’s candidates, and 65.7 per cent of New Komeito candidates.

Kyodo News distributed questionnaires to 1,304 people who were expected to run in the House of Representatives election as of November 26, and had received valid responses from 1,193 by Sunday.

Of the respondents, 230 plan to run for the DPJ, 276 for the main opposition LDP, 65 for the Tomorrow Party of Japan, 35 for the New Komeito Party, 100 for the Japan Restoration Party, 311 for the Japanese Communist Party, 62 for Your Party.

While 30 for the Social Democratic Party, six for New Party Daichi, two for the People’s New Party, one for New Party Nippon, and 56 for other parties. The remaining 19 will run as independents.

The survey showed that those set to run on the ticket of the Japan Restoration Party, led by former Tokyo Governor Shintaro Ishihara, are divided over whether Japan should implement the planned sales tax rate hike to 10 per cent, with 46.9 per cent of its candidates supporting the hike and 49.0 per cent opposed.

On energy issues, 40.9 per cent of the respondents said Japan should withdraw from nuclear power generation gradually by raising the ratio of renewable energy in the nation’s total energy mix.

Only 8.7 per cent said either Japan should not accelerate efforts to withdraw from nuclear power generation or Japan should stick to the nation’s plan to establish new nuclear reactors.

On constitutional change, 25.3 per cent supported full revision, 37.2 per cent supported partial revision, while 33.8 per cent opposed any revision.

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Published on December 03, 2012
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