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Japan to claim its new successor after Shinzo Abe’s resignation

By Ritika Nath

Yoshihide Suga, Japan’s Chief Cabinet Secretary and a long time loyal colleague of the demonstrative Prime Minister Shinzo Abe assured to win the leadership election of a ruling party on Monday, virtually securing his place for the nation’s top job and ensuring that he would be replacing Abe by the end of this week.

The 71-year-old Cabinet Minister, who said that he would follow Abe’s key for economic and foreign policies- Abenomics, is expected to get the majority of votes from 394 Liberal Democratic Party (LDP) lawmakers and is likely to get a victory in this election with securing 141 votes from the party’s local chapters. The public broadcaster NHK reported that Suga is on the way to secure 70% of MP’s votes and was leading among the local chapters.

The winner of the LDP race is supposed to be elected as the next Prime Minister in a parliamentary vote taking place on Wednesday because of the LDP’s majority in the lower house. Suga would be serving as the new acting Prime Minister until the end of Abe’s term which is till September 2021. Shinzo Abe, Japan’s longest-serving leader stated last month that he would be retiring from the post of the nation’s top job due to his declining health, ending a near-record of the eight-year term.

Suga said in a statement that he would be following the guidelines of Shinzo Abe and would continue his signature strategy ‘Abenomics’ to keep using his hyper easy monetary policy, to track the government spending and reform it accordingly while continuing managing the problems of COVID 19 as the economy gets constantly deteriorated because of the pandemic, and still tackling with the old long term issues like Japan’s ageing population and low birth rate.

Suga’s resume is very thin when it comes to diplomatic experience. He would face geopolitical challenges like developing and building ties with the newly elected President of the US after the presidential elections take place in November and he also needs to balance the concerns over China’s bold maritime aggressiveness with bilateral economic interdependence. Suga is moreover known as the behind-the-scenes operator than of a frontline leader.

Would Suga be able to manage the country like Abe profoundly did? Let us know in the comments?

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