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Fumio Kishida, the newly elected Japanese Prime Minister, on Friday delivered his first policy speech, vowing to reach economic growth for the country with his "new form of capitalism" and redistribute the fruits of that success to build up a stronger middle class.
"Only when we properly distribute the fruits of growth will we be able to realize more growth," Kishida said, adding that neoliberal policies had caused a "deep rift between the haves and the have-nots".
On economic policies, Kishida said that his government would invest in cutting-edge fields such as Artificial Intelligence and seek legislation to prevent the leakage of technology. Kishida also promised to implement tax incentives for companies that raise wages.
Meanwhile, the Prime Minister vowed to ward off deflation through drastic monetary easing and fiscal spending. The idea matched with "Abenomics", which was pursued by former premiers Shinzo Abe and Yoshihide Suga.
Regarding the Covid-19 pandemic, Kishida pledged to get fully prepared for booster shots and medical treatments, and he also mentioned legislation to make it easier for the government to impose restrictions on movement and secure medical resources when future waves of infections happen. "The key to crisis management is to be always prepared for the worst-case scenario," Kishida said, adding that cash hand-outs would become available for businesses and people suffering from the health crisis.
He emphasized the importance of communication and building trust with the public and other countries throughout the speech and made the case for building "a kind and warm society based on human connection," quoting an African proverb: "If you want to go fast, go alone. If you want to go far, go together."
As for constitutional revision, he said he would expect constructive debate in Parliament and more public discussion on a way forward.
The ruling Liberal Democratic Party has proposed a set of four amendments such as giving the Cabinet the ability to wield emergency powers during national crises.
In addition, Kishida said that Japan, as the only country to be hit by an atomic bomb in war, would serve as a bridge between nuclear weapons states and non-nuclear weapons states, aiming to realize "a world without nuclear arms". (IANS/JB)
Keywords: Tokyo, Japan, Prime Minister, World, Elections, Fumio Kishida.
Today, 17 September,marks the 133rd birth anniversary of Michiyo Tsujimura, who was a Japanese scientist, and worked extensively on decoding the nutritional value of green tea.
Tsujimura spent her early career as a science teacher. And, in 1920, she chased her dream of becoming a scientific researcher at the Hokkaido Imperial University, where she began to analyse the nutritional properties of Japanese silkworms, in which she was very much interested.
After a few years, Tsujimura transferred to the Tokyo Imperial University, and began researching the biochemistry of green tea alongside Dr. Umetaro Suzuki, who is well known for his discovery of vitamin B1.
In their joint research in this area, it was revealed that green tea contained significant amount of vitamin C, which is the first of many, yet unknown molecular compounds in green tea.
Later on, in 1929, Tsujimura isolated catechin, which is bitter ingredient of tea. Then, the next year, she isolated tannin, which is an even more bitter compound. All these findings formed the foundation for her doctoral thesis– "On the Chemical Components of Green Tea", and through all this hard work, she graduated as Japan's first woman doctor of agriculture in the year 1932.
Moreover, Tsujimura also made history as an educator when she became the first ever Dean of the Faculty of Home Economics at the Tokyo Women's Higher Normal School in the year 1950.
Even today, a stone memorial in honor of Dr. Michiyo Tsujimura’s achievements can be found in her birthplace of Okegawa City.
The World Health Organization warns few governments are providing necessary care for many of the more than 55 million people living with dementia at a time when this debilitating brain condition is growing rapidly around the world. A stock-taking analysis of WHO's 2017 Global Action Plan on Dementia shows few states are implementing measures for caring and treating people living with this condition.
It finds only a quarter of countries worldwide have a national policy or plan for supporting people with dementia and their families. It warns too many governments are unprepared to deal with this growing public health problem, which affects 55 million people globally - more than 60 percent in low-and-middle-income countries.
The World Health Organization estimates the number of people with dementia will rise to 78 million by 2030 and an estimated 139 million by 2050. WHO estimates the global cost of dementia also is expected to balloon from the present $1.3 trillion to $2.8 trillion by 2030.
Technical Officer in WHO's Department of Mental Health and Substance Use, Katrin Seeher, said too many countries lack a basic comprehensive policy to respond to the challenges that lie ahead.
The World Health Organization estimates the number of people with dementia will rise to 78 million by 2030 and an estimated 139 million by 2050. Photo by Andre Benz on Unsplash
"We also need to strengthen the health and the social care system in countries to ensure that there is universal access to dementia diagnosis but also to treatment and care. And we especially need to reduce the gap that exists between high-income and low-and-middle income countries and between urban and rural areas," said Seeher.
Dementia is caused by a variety of diseases and injuries that affect the brain, such as Alzheimer's disease or stroke. It mainly afflicts people over the age of 60 and can affect memory, other cognitive functions, and make it difficult to perform everyday tasks.
Tarun Dua is Unit Head of WHO's Department of Mental Health and Substance Use. While there is no cure, she said reducing risk factors can potentially prevent up to 40 percent of dementia cases.
"For example, healthy diet. Looking at the risk factors, which are the same risk factors for noncommunicable diseases, such as tobacco use or harmful use of alcohol. Managing conditions like hypertension, diabetes, or depression—social isolation. These are the things that we can do promote our brain health and decrease the cognitive decline and the risk for dementia," said Dua.
WHO reports people with dementia require primary health care, specialist care, community-based services, rehabilitation, long-term care, and palliative care.
Health officials note dementia is not a normal part of aging. But countries must be prepared to support and care for the increasing numbers of people that will be afflicted with this disabling condition in the years to come.
(By Lisa Schlein )(VOA/HP)
Keywords: Dementia, World Health Organization, Mental Health, Japan
TOKYO - U.S. climate envoy John Kerry met in Tokyo on Tuesday with Japan's top diplomat to push efforts to fight climate change ahead of a United Nations conference in November.
Foreign Minister Toshimitsu Motegi highlighted what he said was the importance of getting other major carbon emitters, especially China, to cooperate.
"China is the world's biggest carbon emitter and the number two economy as well, and it is extremely important that we encourage China to firmly fulfill its responsibility to match its place," Motegi told reporters after his meeting with Kerry.
Motegi added that he hoped Japan and the United States would lead global decarbonizing efforts at the U.N. conference to be held in Glasgow in late November, known as COP26, and beyond.
The United States is the second-largest carbon emitter. Japan is fifth.
Kerry was also scheduled to meet with Prime Minister Yoshihide Suga, Environment Minister Shinjiro Koizumi, as well as Economy, Trade and Industry Minister Hiroshi Kajiyama.
Kerry arrived in Japan on Monday and will fly out on Tuesday evening to China for more climate talks — his second trip to the country during the Biden administration.
Kerry has called on global leaders to work together and accelerate actions needed to curb rising temperatures to no more than 1.5 degrees Celsius over pre-industrial levels. He urged China to join the U.S. in urgently cutting carbon emissions.
Many countries have pledged to eliminate net carbon emissions by 2050. Japan has promised to strive to reduce its emissions by 46% from 2012 levels, up from an earlier target of 26%, to achieve carbon neutrality by 2050. China has also set a goal to reach carbon neutrality by 2060.
Suga has said Japan will try to push the reduction as high as 50% to be in line with the European Union.
In order to achieve that target, Japan's Environment Ministry is seeking a significant budget increase to promote renewable energy and decarbonizing programs. The Trade and Industry Ministry plans to use large subsidies to promote electric vehicles and wind power generation, according to a draft budget proposal for 2022.
The Trade and Industry Ministry, in its draft basic energy plan released in July, said the share of renewables should be raised to 36-38% of the power supply in 2030 from the current target of 22-24%.
During his Sept. 1-3 China visit, Kerry is expected to meet with his Chinese counterpart, Xie Zhenhua. (VOA/RN)
Keywords: Climate, USA, Japan, Emissions