The Impact of Domestic Politics on Japan’s Foreign Policy

  • F. Quei Quo
Part of the St Antony’s Series book series (STANTS)


Foreign affairs affect domestic politics in Japan, but domestic politics, in turn, impinge on foreign policy.1 Thus, following the 1983 electoral setback of the ruling Liberal Democratic Party (LDP), officials of the Foreign Ministry and top business leaders immediately voiced their concern about the possible adverse effect of the election on foreign policy-making. This close relationship between domestic politics and foreign policy has been dictated by Japan’s geography, cultural traditions and historical experience. For modern Japan, national survival, not to mention growth and prosperity, has always depended on its ties with the outside world.


Prime Minister Foreign Policy Foreign Affair Liberal Democratic Party Opposition Parti 
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Notes and References

  1. 3.
    See Kosakai Shōzō, Jimintb sōsaisen (Kadokawa shoten, 1982).Google Scholar
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    For details see Hong N. Kim, ‘The Fukuda Government and Politics of the Sino-Japanese Peace Treaty’, Asian Survey, vol. xix, no. 3 (March 1979) pp. 297–313.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  3. 8.
    See the JCP 1979 campaign booklet, Sōsenkyo no sōten to nippon kybsantb no seisaku. See also Maitani Ichiro, Shin daitba kyōeikenhiteiron (Aki shobō, 1970) for an earlier criticism of the LDP’s Asia policy.Google Scholar
  4. 9.
    Chitoshi Yanaga, Big Business in Japanese Politics (New Haven, Conn.: Yale University Press, 1968) p. 148.Google Scholar
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    T. J. Pempel, ‘Japanese Foreign Economic Policy: The Domestic Bases for International Behavior’, in Peter J. Katzenstein (ed.), Between Power and Plenty: Foreign Economic Policies of Advanced Industrial States (Madison, Wis.: University of Wisconsin Press, 1978) pp. 139–90.Google Scholar
  8. See also Ishida Takeshi, ‘Wagakuni ni okeru atsuryoku dantai no rekishiteki je)ken to sono tokushitsu’, in Nihon Seiji Gakkai (ed.), Nihon no atsuryoku dantai (Iwanami shoten, 1960).Google Scholar
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    See Tesse Morris-Suzuki, ‘Japan and the Pacific Basin Community’, The World Today, vol. 37, no. 12 (December 1981) pp. 454–60.Google Scholar
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    John C. Danforth, ‘The Politics of Trade’, in Edward R. Fried, Philip H. Trezise and Shigenobu Yoshida (eds), The Future of U.S. Japan Economic Relations (Washington, D.C.: The Brookings Institution, 1983) p. 47.Google Scholar
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    See, for example, Kotani Hidejirō, Dai-niji nichi-bei jidōsha sense) (Nippon kōgyo shimbunsha, 1982).Google Scholar
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    Interview with a Ministry of Agriculture and Forestry senior bureaucrat reported in Kakizawa Kōji, Kanryōtachi to nippon maru (Gakuy6 shobō, 1978) pp. 94–126. Muramatsu Michio’s study also indicates that bureaucrats themselves perceive their influence in industrial and agricultural policies as much stronger than in such other policy areas as health care. See his Sengo nihon no kanryōsei (Tōyō keizai shimbunsha, 1980).Google Scholar
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    Sakakibara Eisuke, Nippon wo enshutsu suru shinkanrybz5 (Yamate shobō, 1977).Google Scholar
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    See Sakaguchi Akira, ‘Zaikai, seitō, kanryō: zaikai wo chushin ni mita pawâ erito shiidan no hensen’, in Masamura Kimihiro (ed.), Gendai nihon no keizai seisaku (Chikuma shobō, 1974). The influence of Shimomura Osamu, a Keynesian in the Ministry of Finance, has been mentioned by many former bureaucrats.Google Scholar
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  17. 30.
    See Yano Toshihiko, Nippon kabushiki kaisha no hansei (Nippon kōgyō shimbunsha, 1972) pp. 84–8.Google Scholar
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    See, for example, Masutaro Urata, ‘New Approaches to Competition Policy’, in U.S. Japan Relations: Towards a New Equilibrium [Annual Review, 1982–3] (Cambridge, Mass.: The Program on U.S.-Japan Relations, Center for International Affairs, Harvard University, 1983).Google Scholar
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    See Zin Ikkō, bkura kanryō (Kōdansha, 1982).Google Scholar
  20. 33.
    See Kakizawa Kōji, Kasumigaseki sanchōme no 5kura kanryō (Gakuyō shobō, 1977) pp. 53–65.Google Scholar
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    Watanabe Ryōjiro, Sonoda Sunao: Zenjinz5 (Gyosei mondai kenkyusho, 1981) pp. 256–7. See also ‘Gaimush6’, in Tahara Sōichirō, Nihon no kanryō 1980 (Bungei shunjūsha, 1979).Google Scholar
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    See T. J. Pempel (ed.), Policymaking in Contemporary Japan (Ithaca, N.Y.: Cornell University Press, 1977) p. 310.Google Scholar

Copyright information

© Gail Lee Bernstein and Haruhiro Fukui 1988

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  • F. Quei Quo

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