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物言う株主 企業価値向上へ対話の道探れ

2013-06-30 04:45:36 | 英字新聞

The Yomiuri Shimbun June 29, 2013
Firms, shareholders must pursue dialogue to raise corporate value
物言う株主 企業価値向上へ対話の道探れ(6月28日付・読売社説)

Activist shareholders, including foreign funds that apply pressure on corporate management, have made their presence felt at recent shareholders meetings for the first time in a long time.
 企業経営に圧力をかける海外ファンドら「物言う株主」が、久しぶりに存在感を示した。

Through their resurgence, Japanese firms face a heavy challenge regarding how to improve corporate value through management reform.
 経営改革によって、企業価値をいかに向上させるか。経営陣は重い課題を突きつけられたと指摘できる。

The annual wave of general shareholders meetings of companies with business terms that ended in March has passed its peak. Activist shareholders were at center stage.
 今年3月期決算企業の株主総会がピークを越えた。焦点は「物言う株主」の動向だった。

At a meeting of Seibu Holdings Inc., its largest shareholder, Cerberus Capital Management LP, argued against management policy and proposed eight director candidates of its own. But the U.S. fund failed to gain majority approval for its proposal as all the candidates recommended by Seibu were elected to the board of directors.
 西武ホールディングスでは、筆頭株主である米ファンドのサーベラスが経営方針に異を唱え、独自の取締役候補を提案した。しかし、多数の賛成を得られず、会社提案の取締役が選任された。

Before the shareholders meeting, Cerberus had pressed for reform of Seibu’s management through such moves as a takeover bid. Seibu argued against the Cerberus reform plan, leading to deepened confrontation with the U.S. fund. But Seibu appears to have managed to block the Cerberus offensive for the moment.
 サーベラスは、株主総会前に株式公開買い付け(TOB)も仕掛けるなど経営改革を迫った。西武は反論し、対立が深まったが、攻勢をひとまず退けたといえる。

Nevertheless, Seibu’s reform is still pending as it seeks to be relisted. The company must tackle that difficult challenge while relations with its largest shareholder go unrepaired.
 ただし、再上場を目指す西武の改革は途上である。筆頭株主との関係が修復できないまま、難題に取り組まざるをえない。

Questions to answer

Sony Corp. had been asked by a U.S. fund, one of its major shareholders, to spin off its movie and music business and list the new entity on the stock market. But Sony took a wary stance toward dividing up its businesses, arguing that synergistic effects can be expected with the manufacturing of TV sets and other businesses.
 ソニーは、大株主の米ファンドから映画・音楽事業の分離と上場を求められたものの、テレビ事業などとの相乗効果が見込めるとして分離に慎重だった。

At its shareholders meeting, however, Sony was pressed on the separation issue by other shareholders. As a result, Sony announced a plan to study the demand. Improving earning capacity through reconstruction of its main line of business, including production of TV sets, has now become an important task for the Sony management.
 株主総会では、他の株主からも分離問題を追及され、この要求を検討していく方針を表明した。テレビなどの主力事業を立て直し、収益力を向上させることが重要な経営課題となった。

Stable shareholders, including banks and business customers, account for a majority of shareholders in Japanese firms, so management often lacks a perspective of paying attention to shareholders. Japanese companies tend to put a low priority on earnings power and returning profits to shareholders.
 日本の企業では、銀行や取引先など安定株主が多数を占め、株主の声に耳を傾ける意識に乏しい経営陣が多い。収益力や株主への利益還元が物足りない面もある。

More parties heard from

Abenomics, the economic policy pursued by the administration of Prime Minister Shinzo Abe, has drawn fresh global attention to the Japanese economy. As a result, the ratio of foreign holders of Japanese equities reached a record high of about 30 percent as of the end of March.
 安倍政権の経済政策「アベノミクス」によって日本経済が注目された効果で、外国人株主の日本株保有比率が3月末に過去最高の約3割に達した。

In addition to foreigners, the number of Japanese shareholders who strongly press demands, such as expansion of profits to improve corporate value, is certain to increase. Management must be prepared to listen sincerely to shareholders’ voices.
 今後、外国人だけでなく、利益拡大など企業価値の向上に一段と厳しく注文を付ける株主は増えるに違いない。経営陣は株主の声を真摯(しんし)に聞く姿勢が必要である。

It is laudable that Toyota Motor Corp. and many other Japanese firms decided at this year’s shareholders meetings to adopt outside board directors, thereby meeting the requests of shareholders.
 今年の総会で、トヨタ自動車など多くの企業が社外取締役の起用を決め、株主の要望に応えた点は評価できよう。

Nonetheless, shareholders’ demands for short-term stock price increases and higher dividends are not always right. Investment in personnel training and research and development is also vital from the viewpoint of enhancing corporate competitiveness in the medium and long term.
 無論、短期的な株価上昇や配当増額を求める株主の主張が、必ずしも正しいとは言えない。人材育成や研究開発など、中長期的に競争力を高める投資も重要だ。

Management has a responsibility to present reasonable policy and continue dialogue with shareholders even if it turns down their specific demands.
 経営陣が株主の主張を退けるにしても、対話を重ね、合理的な方針を示す「説明責任」が要る。

Improving corporate value is a common goal for firms and shareholders. They will be required to accelerate management reform amid their tense relationship.
 企業価値の向上は、企業と株主の共通目標である。互いに緊張関係を保ちながら、経営改革を加速することが求められよう。

(From The Yomiuri Shimbun, June 28, 2013)
(2013年6月28日01時27分  読売新聞)

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通常国会閉幕 首相問責で野党は何を得たか

2013-06-29 05:47:12 | 英字新聞

The Yomiuri Shimbun June 28, 2013
Opposition parties lost more than they gained through censure
通常国会閉幕 首相問責で野党は何を得たか(6月27日付・読売社説)

The ordinary Diet session has closed in a terribly disorganized manner.
 あまりにお粗末な通常国会の幕切れである。

On Wednesday, the last day of the Diet session, the House of Councillors adopted a censure motion against Prime Minister Shinzo Abe. The Democratic Party of Japan, Your Party, and other opposition parties voted for the motion in the opposition-dominated chamber.
 参院が安倍首相の問責決議を民主党、みんなの党など野党の賛成多数で可決した。

Then the opposition parties refused deliberations of bills in the upper house, behaving as if such refusal was reasonable. Key bills, such as those to revise the Electric Utility Law and the Daily Life Protection Law, were scrapped as a result. A bill to formulate a basic law on the water cycle, which was submitted as lawmaker-initiated legislation to protect water sources, was discarded as well.
 参院で野党は、当然のように法案審議を拒み、電気事業法改正案、生活保護法改正案や、水源地を守るための水循環基本法案など議員提出法案が廃案になった。

The censure motion was submitted by the People’s Life Party, Green Wind and the Social Democratic Party. They condemned Abe for his recent skipping of deliberations at the upper house Budget Committee, claiming the act “violates the Constitution.”
 問責決議は、生活の党、みどりの風、社民党の3党が提出したもので、参院予算委員会の審議に首相が出席しなかったことを「憲法違反」だと主張していた。

Clear political motive

It is clear the motive of the three parties was to use Abe’s absence from certain Diet deliberations as a tool to launch an offensive against the Liberal Democratic Party ahead of the upcoming upper house election. Do they really think such actions will be welcomed by the public? If so, we have to warn them that they have made a glaring mistake.
 参院選を前に、自民党批判の材料にしたいのが見え見えだ。こうした姿勢が国民に評価されると考えるのなら勘違いも甚だしい。

In the first place, were Abe’s actions really worthy of censure? Abe absented himself in response to the unilateral decision by Budget Committee Chairman Hajime Ishii, a DPJ member, to hold intensive deliberations at the committee meetings, using the chairman’s authority to hold such meetings. The ruling parties said a no-confidence motion against upper house President Kenji Hirata, which had been submitted earlier, should be dealt with first, and boycotted the deliberations.
 そもそも首相を問責するほどの事態だったのか。参院予算委は民主党の石井一委員長が職権で開会を決め、与党は参院議長不信任案の処理が先だとして欠席した。

That was the reason why Chief Cabinet Secretary Yoshihide Suga defended Abe’s actions, saying that the prime minister had “sound justification” for skipping the deliberations. We believe Suga’s explanation has some validity.
 菅官房長官が、首相が出席しないことに「正当な理由がある」と抗弁したのも一理ある。

On the other hand, it is extremely difficult to understand why the DPJ’s upper house caucus decided to vote for the censure motion.
 理解できないのは、問責決議に賛成した参院民主党である。

On Tuesday, the DPJ assured the ruling parties that it would prioritize the passage of important bills and thus will not agree with the censure motion.
 民主党は25日、重要法案の処理を優先し、問責決議案は採決しない方針を与党と確認していた。

However, the next morning, the DPJ abruptly changed its attitude, having been persuaded by Your Party and other opposition parties. If the DPJ had kept its initial stance, the key bills would have been able to pass the Diet smoothly.
 ところが、26日午前になると、みんなの党など他党に同調し、対応が一変した。民主党が採決反対を貫いていれば何の問題もなく、重要法案は成立しただろう。

We believe the DPJ itself still has a vivid memory of being distressed by censure motions, which lack legally binding power, when the party held the reins of government. DPJ Secretary General Goshi Hosono defended the party’s action by saying, “The LDP has no enthusiasm for completing the bills.” This remark is a transparent attempt to dodge the DPJ’s responsibility and shift blame to the LDP.
 民主党は与党を経験し、法的な効力のない問責決議の理不尽さを十分痛感したはずだ。細野幹事長は「自民党に法案を仕上げる熱意が全くない」と自民党を非難したが、責任転嫁にほかならない。

This Diet session’s top political issue was electoral system reform for the House of Representatives. Regarding that issue, the ruling parties exchanged documents with opposition parties confirming that “once the upper house election finishes, parties will immediately resume negotiations and reach a conclusion” on drastic reform, including a reduction in the number of lower house seats.
 今国会での最大の政治課題だった衆院選挙制度改革に関しては、与野党が、定数削減を含む抜本的な見直しについて「参院選後、速やかに各党間の協議を再開し、結論を得る」と文書で確認した。

However, if the parties continue insisting upon only their own ideas for reducing lower house seats and do not compromise, and if they continue their attitude of putting party interest above national interest, making such agreements will be absolutely meaningless.
 だが、各党が定数削減にこだわり、党利党略の主張を繰り返すだけであれば、こんな約束を何度交わしても意味がない。

Creating a third-party body

To break the impasse on the issue, Abe revealed a proposal at a press conference held after the end of the Diet session. “I would like to suggest establishing a third-party organization [on electoral system reform], which comprises experts from the private sector, within the Diet,” Abe said. We believe this is a sound proposal.
 膠着(こうちゃく)状態を打破するために、首相は国会閉会後の記者会見で、「民間の有識者による第三者機関を国会に設けることを提案する」と言明した。妥当な判断だ。

The organization should have binding power so the parties would comply with the conclusion of experts.
 各党が有識者の出した結論を尊重するよう、拘束力をもつ機関とすべきである。

Meanwhile, during the Diet session, the Commission on the Constitution in both the lower and the upper house has vigorously discussed the issue of amending the Constitution, even debating on the specific contents of each amendment. Constitutional amendments are likely to become a major point of contention in the upper house election. We urge parties to make concrete proposals during the election campaign, so that the voters can make informed decisions on the issue.
 今国会では、衆参の憲法審査会が、具体的な憲法改正内容にも踏み込んで論議を重ねた。参院選では憲法改正が大きな争点となる。有権者が判断しやすいよう、具体的な論戦を望みたい。

(From The Yomiuri Shimbun, June 27, 2013)
(2013年6月27日01時17分  読売新聞)

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離島防衛訓練 自衛隊に海兵隊機能が必要だ

2013-06-28 05:44:29 | 英字新聞

The Yomiuri Shimbun June 26, 2013
SDF must be equipped with functions like those of U.S. marines
離島防衛訓練 自衛隊に海兵隊機能が必要だ(6月25日付・読売社説)

To bolster the defense of Senkakus and other remote islands, the Self-Defense Forces urgently require upgraded capabilities similar to those of the U.S. Marine Corps, such as the ability to carry out amphibious landings and rapid deployment.
 尖閣諸島を含めた離島防衛を強化するには、海からの着上陸や緊急展開の能力などの「海兵隊的機能」を自衛隊に持たせることが急務だ。

The SDF and the U.S. military have been conducting joint exercises in California for the defense of remote islands. This is the first time the Ground, Maritime and Air Self-Defense Forces have all conducted overseas exercises with the U.S. military.
 自衛隊と米軍が10~26日に米カリフォルニア州で、離島防衛の共同訓練を実施している。陸海空3自衛隊と米軍による海外での統合訓練は初めてである。

During the training, the U.S. military’s new MV-22 Osprey transport aircraft landed on the deck of an MSDF destroyer. The GSDF’s Western Army Infantry Regiment, which is primarily responsible for the defense of remote islands, was engaged in joint training with U.S. marines to regain remote islands captured by an enemy.
 訓練では、米軍の新型輸送機MV22オスプレイが海上自衛隊の護衛艦に着艦した。離島防衛を主任務とする陸上自衛隊の西方普通科連隊は、海兵隊とともに、敵に占領された離島の奪還も行った。

These are practical exercises to meet the needs of the times, as the defense of remote islands is of increased importance.
 離島防衛の重要性が増す中、時宜にかなう実戦的な訓練だ。

Chinese expansionism

Training has been conducted with the Chinese military as the supposed enemy. China called for the training to be canceled as its timing overlapped with a U.S.-China summit meeting. It is natural that Tokyo and Washington refused the Chinese request.
 訓練は中国軍を対象に想定している。米中首脳会談の時期と重なったため、中国は中止を求めた。日米が拒否したのは当然だ。

Under the banner of making China a maritime power, that country’s navy, air force and State Oceanic Administration have been bolstering their equipment, openly aiming to expand their territorial and national interests in the East and South China seas.
 中国は「海洋強国化」の名の下、海空軍や国家海洋局の装備を増強し、公然と東・南シナ海での領土・権益拡大を目指している。

Intrusions by China’s maritime surveillance ships into Japanese territorial waters around the Senkaku Islands can be dealt with by the Japan Coast Guard. But to deter Chinese special forces from occupying the islands, it will be indispensable to improve the quick reaction capabilities that can be acquired through the joint exercises of the SDF and U.S. military.
 海洋監視船による尖閣諸島周辺の領海侵入には海上保安庁が対応するにせよ、中国の特殊部隊による島の占拠などを抑止するには、共同訓練を通じた自衛隊と米軍の即応力の向上が欠かせない。

Military threats to Japan have changed dramatically since the end of the Cold War. Invasions of remote islands can be considered “new threats” along with missile strikes, terrorist attacks and cyber-attacks. SDF personnel allocations, equipment and training must be reexamined in accordance with the changed threats.
 冷戦終結後、日本の軍事的脅威は大きく変化した。離島侵攻は、ミサイル、テロ、サイバー攻撃とともに、「新たな脅威」と位置づけられる。脅威の変化に応じて、自衛隊の部隊編成や装備、訓練を見直さなければならない。

Defense of remote islands will be a core of the new National Defense Program Guidelines to be compiled by late December.
 今年末に策定する新防衛大綱では離島防衛が一つの柱となる。

It will be essential to augment the GSDF’s Western Army Infantry Regiment, which plays a central role in defense of the Nansei Islands stretching from Kagoshima Prefecture through Okinawa Prefecture, as well as to obtain equipment such as amphibious landing vehicles. To secure naval and air supremacy, it will be necessary to increase the number of MSDF destroyers and ASDF fighter jets and early warning aircraft so as to strengthen warning and surveillance activities.
 南西諸島防衛の中核を担う陸自西方普通科連隊を拡充し、水陸両用車など装備を増強すべきだ。制海・制空権の確保へ、海自の護衛艦や航空自衛隊の戦闘機、早期警戒管制機なども増やし、警戒監視活動を強化する必要がある。

New hardware needed

Procurement of the Global Hawk, an unmanned surveillance aircraft, must be accelerated while introduction of Osprey tilt-rotor aircraft must be studied earnestly.
 無人偵察機グローバルホークの取得を急ぐとともに、オスプレイの導入も真剣に検討したい。

Amphibious vehicles and Osprey aircraft will be useful for rescue operations and relief activities in damaged areas in times of major disasters such as earthquakes.
 水陸両用車やオスプレイは、地震など大規模災害時の人命救助や被災地支援にも効果があろう。

The administration of Prime Minister Shinzo Abe has boosted the defense budget for the current fiscal year, the first increase in 11 years, reversing the trend of year-on-year erosion in defense spending. Given the worsening of the security environment around Japan, defense spending must be increased next fiscal year and onward. But a huge hike cannot be expected in light of stringent fiscal conditions.
 安倍政権は今年度、削減が続いていた防衛予算を11年ぶりに増加させた。日本の安全保障環境が悪化する中、来年度以降も増加すべきだが、厳しい財政事情を踏まえれば、大幅な伸びは望めない。

It is essential to allocate defense budgets on a priority basis, such as by expanding allocations for bolstering “dynamic defense capabilities” that emphasize troop mobility, particularly for defense of remote islands, while curtailing spending through cuts in the number of GSDF personnel, consolidation and abolition of bases and efficient procurement of equipment.
 離島防衛を含む、部隊の機動力を重視する「動的防衛力」の強化など重点分野は大胆に増やす。一方で、陸自の定員削減や基地の統廃合、装備調達の効率化などで一部の歳出は減らす。防衛予算にメリハリをつけることが大切だ。

(From The Yomiuri Shimbun, June 25, 2013)
(2013年6月25日01時27分  読売新聞)

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首相沖縄訪問 政府一丸で基地負担を減らせ

2013-06-27 05:37:28 | 英字新聞

The Yomiuri Shimbun June 25, 2013
Govt needs to make unified efforts to reduce burden on Okinawa
首相沖縄訪問 政府一丸で基地負担を減らせ(6月24日付・読売社説)

To reduce the excessive burden on Okinawa Prefecture of hosting U.S. military bases, the government must make unified efforts.
 沖縄の過重な米軍基地負担を軽減するため、政府は一丸となって努力する必要がある。

On Sunday, the 68th anniversary of the end of the Battle of Okinawa during World War II, Prime Minister Shinzo Abe visited the prefecture and attended a memorial ceremony held to console the souls of those who died in the battle.
 太平洋戦争の沖縄戦で組織的戦闘が終結したとされる「慰霊の日」の23日、安倍首相が沖縄県を訪問し、沖縄全戦没者追悼式に出席した。

Foreign Minister Fumio Kishida, Defense Minister Itsunori Onodera and Ichita Yamamoto, state minister for Okinawa affairs, also attended the ceremony. It marked the first participation by foreign and defense ministers since such ceremonies were first held in 1962.
 式典には、岸田外相、小野寺防衛相、山本沖縄相も同席した。外相、防衛相の出席は初めてだ。

To tackle the Okinawa issues, it is essential that the ministries concerned closely cooperate with each other and coordinate views with local governments in a multitiered manner.
沖縄問題に取り組むには、関係府省の緊密な連携と、地元との重層的な調整が欠かせない。

‘Visible’ reduction

Following the ceremony, Abe said his government would implement measures to reduce the burden of Okinawa “visibly.” With regard to the U.S. Marine Corps’ Futenma Air Station, Abe said the Futenma base should not be permanently used. “We’d like to make efforts to realize the relocation of the base as soon as possible,” he said.
 首相は式典後、基地負担軽減について「目に見える形で実施したい」と語った。米軍普天間飛行場に関しては、「固定化はあってはならない。一日も早い移設に努力を重ねたい」と強調した。

The governments of Japan and the United States announced in early April that the tracts of land, more than 1,000 hectares when combined, that are now used for the six U.S. military facilities in the southern part of the prefecture will be returned to Japan over the next 10 to 16 years.
 日米両政府は4月上旬、県南部の米軍6施設について10~16年間程度で計1000ヘクタール以上の広大な土地を返還する計画を発表した。

The quickest way to reduce Okinawa’s burden of hosting the U.S. bases is to steadily implement this plan. It is particularly important to realize the relocation of Futenma Air Station in Ginowan to the Henoko area of Nago.
この計画の着実な実行こそが沖縄の負担を減らす最大の近道だ。
 特に普天間飛行場の辺野古移設を実現することが重要である。

Both governments agreed on June 13 that the return of the residential area of western Futenma used by Camp Zukeran in Ginowan, originally scheduled for next fiscal year, would be carried out within this year.
 日米両政府は今月13日、来年度に予定していたキャンプ瑞慶覧の西普天間住宅地区の返還を年内にも前倒しすることで合意した。

This can be highly evaluated as part of the government’s efforts to improve the environment for Okinawa Gov. Yoshikazu Nakaima to approve the reclamation of land from public waters, planned in line with the relocation of the air station to the Henoko coastal area.
 普天間飛行場の辺野古移設に伴う公有水面埋め立てを、仲井真弘多知事が承認しやすくするための環境整備の一環と評価できる。

It is important for the central and local governments to hold talks over those areas that are to be vacated with the return of the U.S. military facilities and discuss ways to use them more efficiently. Such efforts should be made in tandem with the implementation of various measures designed to promote the local economies of Okinawa. They would certainly enhance the significance of the return of the U.S. bases to Japan.
 大切なのは、基地返還後の跡地について、政府と地元自治体などが協議し、より効率的な利用策を検討することだ。様々な沖縄振興策とも連動させたい。それが基地返還の価値を高めよう。

Promotion of economy

After the ceremony, Abe and Nakaima exchanged views over how to promote the Okinawa economy. While fostering their relationship of trust, Abe should win a broader understanding of Nakaima over the Futenma relocation to the Henoko district.
 首相は式典後、沖縄振興策について知事と意見交換した。信頼関係を醸成しつつ、辺野古移設への知事の理解を広げるべきだ。

On the other hand, the reduction of Okinawa’s burden of hosting U.S. bases should be made, in principle, while maintaining the deterrence of the U.S. forces stationed in Okinawa Prefecture.
 一方で、基地負担の軽減はあくまで、在沖縄米軍の抑止力の維持と両立させなければならない。

This is essential because the ability to respond rapidly and maintain mobility of the Self-Defense Forces and the U.S. forces stationed in Japan has become more important in the light of the nuclear and missile development by North Korea and the rapid military buildup and aggressive actions of China.
 北朝鮮の核・ミサイル開発や、中国の急速な軍備増強と示威活動の拡大を踏まえれば、自衛隊と米軍の即応・機動力の重要性が今、一段と増しているからだ。

The town assembly of Yonaguni, Okinawa Prefecture, approved on Thursday the lease of land to the central government needed for the deployment of a Ground Self-Defense Force unit on the Yonaguni Island to monitor coastal areas.
 沖縄県与那国町議会は20日、与那国島への陸上自衛隊沿岸監視部隊の配備に伴う町有地の国への賃貸を承認した。

The Defense Ministry and the town were once at odds over the payment of cooperation expenses to the town concerning the deployment of the GSDF unit. But they are expected to conclude the lease contract later this week.
防衛省と町は一時、陸自配備に関する町への協力費支払いをめぐって対立したが、週内にも賃貸契約を結ぶ運びだ。

For both the SDF and the U.S. forces in Japan to operate effectively, it is essential for both to build stable and amicable relations with local officials concerned. The Defense Ministry needs to continuously deepen its ties with Okinawa by making use of various opportunities in the days ahead.
 自衛隊や米軍が効果的な活動を行うには、地元関係者と安定的で良好な関係を築くことが前提となる。防衛省は引き続き、様々な機会をとらえ、沖縄との関係を深めることが求められる。

(From The Yomiuri Shimbun, June 24, 2013)
(2013年6月24日01時40分  読売新聞)

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都議選自公完勝 アベノミクスへの期待票だ

2013-06-26 05:59:08 | 英字新聞

The Yomiuri Shimbun June 25, 2013
Abenomics helped LDP, Komeito score huge victory in Tokyo poll
都議選自公完勝 アベノミクスへの期待票だ(6月24日付・読売社説)

The administration of Prime Minister Shinzo Abe has been given a significant boost. It remains to be seen whether the voters’ verdict this time will affect the outcome of next month’s House of Councillors election.
 安倍政権にとっては大きな追い風だ。
 有権者の政権に対する支持が本物かどうかは、来月の参院選で試されることになろう。

In the Tokyo Metropolitan Assembly election on Sunday, all of the Liberal Democratic Party’s candidates were elected, and the LDP regained its status as the largest party in the assembly. The LDP’s coalition partner, New Komeito, also succeeded in having all of its candidates elected, and it took over as the second-largest force.
 東京都議選で自民党は候補者全員が当選し、都議会第1党を奪還した。公明党も手堅く全勝し、第2党の座を占めた。

The LDP and Komeito, which form the ruling coalition, threw their support behind Tokyo Gov. Naoki Inose and together far exceeded a majority of seats in the 127-seat assembly. The metropolitan government will certainly gain stability.
猪瀬直樹知事の与党である自公両党の議席が過半数を大幅に超え、都政が安定するのは間違いない。

DPJ trounced

As there were few contentious issues on how to steer the administration of the metropolitan government, the assembly election, the first major electoral contest since the second Abe Cabinet was launched in December, focused mainly on the public’s evaluation of Abenomics, the Abe administration’s handling of economic policies.
 第2次安倍内閣の発足後、初の大型選挙となった都議選では、都政に関する大きな争点が不在だったこともあって、もっぱら安倍政権の経済政策「アベノミクス」に対する評価が焦点となった。

Given the landslide victory of both the LDP and Komeito, it can safely be said the Abe administration’s key policies and its government management received a favorable rating from Tokyo voters.
 自公両党の完勝によって、安倍政権の政策と政権運営は、前向きの評価を得たと言える。

However, there have been a number of recent cases in which candidates backed by the LDP have lost to incumbents in local contests, including the June 16 gubernatorial election in Shizuoka Prefecture.
 ただ、静岡県知事選など最近の地方選では、自民党系の候補が現職に敗れるケースが目立つ。

Commenting on the results of the Tokyo assembly election, Abe told reporters, “What we need now is to brace ourselves by deepening our sense of humility.”
安倍首相は選挙後、「今求められているのは、一層謙虚に身を引き締めていくことだ」と語った。

The DPJ, which became the largest party after the previous Tokyo assembly election in 2009, suffered a shattering defeat, plunging to fourth position in the assembly. This appears to reflect the deep-rooted distrust of voters after the party committed a number of serious blunders over the handling of national politics. It is evident that the party has failed to stop its decline in strength.
 前回都議選で第1党に進出した民主党は、地滑り的な大敗を喫し、第4党に転落した。国政で失政を重ねたことに対する有権者の不信感が、いまだに根強いことの証左である。退潮傾向に歯止めはかからなかったと言えよう。

In its latest electoral campaign, the DPJ stressed the negative aspects of Abenomics by taking note of the current erratic fluctuations of stock prices and exchange rates. The party’s unyielding reproach against the government without offering counterproposals apparently failed to satisfy the electorate.
 民主党は、株価や為替相場が乱高下していることなどから、アベノミクスのマイナス面を訴えた。だが、批判一辺倒で説得力に欠けたのではないか。

In the upcoming upper house race, the DPJ should have in-depth policy discussions with the LDP by presenting specific policy measures that offer an alternative to government policies.
 参院選では、具体的な対案を示し、自民党との政策論争を深めてもらいたい。

Despite fielding a large number of candidates in the Tokyo assembly race, Nippon Ishin no Kai (Japan Restoration Party) fared extremely poorly. This was probably due to remarks by the party’s coleader Toru Hashimoto regarding the issue of so-called comfort women.
 日本維新の会は大量の候補を擁立したにもかかわらず、全く振るわなかった。橋下共同代表のいわゆる従軍慰安婦問題をめぐる発言が響いたのだろう。

During the campaign, former Tokyo Gov. Shintaro Ishihara, the other party coleader, complained about Hashimoto. In response, Hashimoto hinted he might step down from the party’s top post depending on the outcome of the Tokyo contest.
 石原共同代表が選挙期間中に橋下氏に苦言を呈し、橋下氏も都議選の結果次第では辞任もあり得ると発言する事態にまで至った。

It should be noted that Tokyo is Ishihara’s hometown. The disastrous defeat of Ishin no Kai should be attributed partly to the dwindling influence of Ishihara over Tokyo voters.
 ただ、東京は石原氏の地元だ。今回の惨敗は石原氏の影響力低下に負う面も小さくない。

Link with upper house race

Your Party, which withdrew from an electoral cooperation accord with Ishin no Kai because of the Hashimoto remarks on the comfort women issue, did remarkably well considering it fought the election single-handedly. The party seems to have obtained some degree of support from floating voters who are averse to the LDP and the DPJ.
 みんなの党は、橋下発言を機に維新との選挙協力を解消して選挙に臨んだが、躍進した。自民、民主両党に批判的な無党派層の一定の受け皿になったと見られる。

The Japanese Communist Party doubled its seats in the Tokyo assembly to become the third-largest party in the assembly. This may be due to the low turnout compared with the previous Tokyo assembly election as well as its solid support base on the strength of its organizational skills.
 共産党も議席を倍増し、民主党を抜いて第3党に進出した。投票率が前回を大きく下回ったことなどが、組織力のある政党を押し上げたと言えよう。

Attention is now focused on how the respective parties’ vote-garnering capabilities that have been demonstrated in the Tokyo race may affect the electoral landscape for the July upper house election.
 今回の都議選で表れた各党の得票動向が、参院選にどう連動するか注目される。

(From The Yomiuri Shimbun, June 24, 2013)
(2013年6月24日01時40分  読売新聞)

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