Chronologies

Japan - China

Chronology


: Japan’s military asks for the equivalent of a $16 billion increase in its FY 2024 budget, up 15.5% over 2023, to sustain and maintain equipment, and increased its stores of ammunition.

: Yomiuri reports that Xi Jinping’s administration tacitly approved posts on Chinese social media sites that criticize the Japanese government and call for boycotts of Japanese products with the Publicity Department of the Chinese Communist Party’s Central Committee apparently leading the campaign.

: Foreign Minister Hayashi says Japan may file a complaint against China over its blanket ban on Japanese seafood imports, adding that Japan has no desire to let this dispute escalate into a full-blown diplomatic row.

: Asahi opines that China’s dismissal of Komeito’s peace overture shows that China-Japan relations are spiraling out of control so quickly that it may take months, if not years, to restore any semblance of normalcy.

: Chinese BZK-005 military reconnaissance drone flies between Japan’s westernmost island of Yonaguni in Okinawa Prefecture and Taiwan, in the fourth recorded such flight. There is no violation of Japanese air space.

: Japan’s government and its embassy in Beijing receive many harassment phone calls, likely from China, after release of treated radioactive water from the Fukushima nuclear power plant into the Pacific. Chinese media accuse the Japanese government and media of trying to portray Japan as a victim by hyping a few incidents by individuals that were not encouraged by either Chinese public opinion or the authorities.

: Chinese state-backed hackers are believed to be behind the attack on Japan’s National Center of Incident Readiness and Strategy for Cybersecurity (NISC), beginning last autumn and not detected until June.

: Chinese security guards seize a Chinese man who threw stones and eggs onto the premises of Japanese schools in Qingdao while reportedly objecting to the water release.

: As Tokyo prepares to sharply boost defense spending in the face of East Asia’s worsening security situation, major defense contractors including Britain’s BAE and America’s Lockheed begin shifting the headquarters of their Asian operations to Japan.

: Air Self-Defense Force scrambles jet fighters to monitor two Chinese H-6 bombers flying between Okinawa and Miyako islands.

: China informs Yamaguchi Natsuo, head of junior partner Komeito in Japan’s coalition government, that the timing of his planned visit is not appropriate considering the situation of Japan-China relations. Yamaguchi had planned to hand Xi Jinping a personal letter from Kishida.

: Chinese Customs Authority bans all imports of all Japanese seafood the same day that TEPCO begins releasing treated water from the Fukushima No. 1 nuclear power plant into the ocean.

: Japan’s government considers scrapping a long-held pacifistic principle to allow exporting weapons with lethal capabilities directly to third countries with next-generation fighter jets, which Japan is jointly developing with Britain and Italy, in mind.

: Tokyo Electric Power Company (TEPCO) announces that it will provide compensation for damage linked to the ocean release of treated water from its Fukushima No. 1 nuclear power plant, such as a decline in marine product sales due to lower prices or consumers’ reluctance to buy.

: According to TEPCO, the planned release of 31,200 tons of water over four separate occasions during the fiscal year will not make a dent in the massive amount of contaminated water accumulating there.

: LDP Diet member Suzuki Norikazu leads a 65-person LDP delegation comprising members of the Diet, local representatives, and university students on a four-day visit to Taiwan.

: With the increasingly hegemonic behavior of China in mind, the Japanese foreign ministry hosts first Tokyo International Law Seminar with the aim of enhancing countries’ ability to handle legal disputes over territorial waters and other matters, and to strengthen the rule of law in the Indo-Pacific region.

: In line with its previous pledge to boost total defense spending for the five years to fiscal 2027 to 43 trillion yen, more than 1.5 times the previous amount, the Japanese defense ministry will request a 12% increase from the record spending approved for fiscal year 2024.

: Citing China’s use of the Solomon Islands as a bridgehead to accelerate advances in the South Pacific, Yomiuri editorializes on the importance of Japanese cooperation with the United States and Australia to help solidify the foundations of South Pacific states.

: Chinese sources denounce the spirit of Camp David—the meeting of President Biden, President Yoon, and Prime Minister Kishida—as “hypocritical anti-China pantomime with a mini-NATO in the making.”

: According to statistics from Chinese customs authorities, imports of fish from Japan decline 34% month-on-month in July and are down 28% compared with July 2022. China’s blanket radiation testing of all seafood imported from Japan was imposed July 8-9, and the declines are likely to continue.

: An analysis of how China’s stricter gallium export license requirements will affect Japan concludes that while Japan’s cheap offshore wind technology might be undermined in the short term, the impact of new export restrictions on defense and EV technology advancement will most likely be minimal and more of a price impact than an overall supply impact.

: In an effort to encourage Middle East investment to shift from China to Japan as well as secure funds to help cover the massive cost of developing semiconductors, the Japanese government will begin working-level talks with a fund linked to the government of the United Arab Emirates.

: Japan logs a customs-cleared trade deficit of ¥78.7 billion in July, the first year-on-year drop in exports in about two and a half years.

: 35 Chinese executives, many of whom run textile- and apparel-related businesses, visit Okabun Orimono, a 333-year old brocade-manufacturing company, to inquire about its secret for longevity.

: Kishida does not personally visit the Yasukuni Shrine on the 78th anniversary of the end of World War II but tendered the ritual tamagushi offering through an agent and at his own expense as president of the ruling LDP rather than in his official capacity as prime minister.

: Chinese foreign ministry makes serious protestations with Japan after Kishida sends a ritual offering to the Yasukuni Shrine.

: Wu Qian, spokesman for China’s Ministry of National Defense, urges Japan to stop meaningless interference and refrain from irresponsible words and deeds that harm healthy China-Japan bilateral ties and undermine regional peace and stability.

: In the third consecutive quarter of expansion and fueled by a strong performance by its export sector, the Japanese economy grows by an annualized rate of 6% in the second quarter of 2023. Still, a decline in domestic consumption is a cause of concern.

: Expert at the China Institutes for Contemporary International Relations points to contradictions in Japan’s attitudes toward radioactive pollution: in the 1990s, Tokyo was a pioneer in opposing Russia’s disposal of nuclear waste into the sea, but it is now promoting dumping of nuclear contaminated wastewater.

: According to China Daily, visiting former Japanese Prime Minister Hatoyama Yukio describes China-Japan relations as at a crossroads, urged both sides to rather than disliking each other due to differing values and systems, acknowledge differences, mutual respect, and mutual understanding.

: China’s July automobile exports increase 63%, further extending its lead over Japan as the world’s biggest vehicle-exporting economy

: Japan and China mark 45th anniversary of the signing of a bilateral treaty of peace and friendship quietly, with no official events.

: Editorial in Global Times rejects optimistic predictions for improving China-Japan relations.

: Suzuki Keisuke, an LDP lawmaker who accompanied Aso to Taiwan, tells the BS Fuji talk show that Aso had discussed the issue with Japanese government officials, indicating that Aso’s view was not a personal remark, but a result of arrangements with government insiders, saying that “I think the Japanese government clearly regards this as the official line.”

: China lifts its ban on group tours to Japan after a suspension of more than three years due to the novel coronavirus pandemic. The decision is expected to be a boon to Japan’s tourism industry.

: According to Beijing-based military expert Wei Dongxu, with the Japan-Australia reciprocal access agreement taking effect, enabling Japan to deploy troops in Australia, the SDF’s area of operation is being extended from the East China Sea to the South China Sea, and now in the direction of the Indian Ocean.

: Under the new OSA cooperation agreement that allows provision of equipment and supplies to the armed forces of like-minded countries, the Japanese government is considering military aid totaling ¥5 billion ($34 million) to Vietnam, the Philippines, Indonesia, Mongolia, Papua New Guinea and Djibouti, in fiscal 2024, with an eye to keeping China’s maritime expansion and military buildup in check.

: Visiting Taiwan at the invitation of the Taiwan government, LDP vice-president Aso Taro lays flowers at the grave of former President Lee Teng-hui and states that Japan must be willing to fight to repel a Chinese invasion of the island. This is the first time that an LDP vice president officially visited the island since Japan and Taiwan severed diplomatic ties in 1972.

: Washington Post discloses unreported Chinese cyberhack of Japanese security systems in 2020.

: Anticipating the Camp David Summit, Global Times warns Japan and South Korea against Washington’s rumored plans for a “historic joint statement.”

: Mindful of the economic security implications of continued Chinese acquisitions of cobalt and other minerals in Africa, the Japanese government will encourage Japanese companies to develop mines and acquire interests in the continent.

: Following an incident in which a Chinese researcher at the National Institute of Advanced Technology allegedly leaked information to a Chinese company, the government intends to ascertain the quality of the systems and measures in place at universities and research facilities and call for improvements in cases of lax supervision.

: A Yomiuri editorial laments that defense capabilities cannot be strengthened unless there is an improvement in the current norm in which the number of SDF personnel are lower than the recruitment quota.

: A tabletop wargame simulating China’s invasion of Taiwan underscores Japan’s slow decision-making process, with the delay having implications for the ability to quell the situation.

: Japan will monitor foreign purchases of land in light of revelations on Chinese acquisitions on Okinawa.

: A new liaison organization between the Defense Ministry and private businesses is established to promote public-private cooperation to develop cybersecurity talent, based in Yokosuka Research Park near the GSDF Signal School. The government plans to increase the total number of cybersecurity personnel for the Defense Ministry and the SDF to 20,000 and the organization will be established to help realize the plan.

: For the first time since 2017, foreign investment inflows into Asian emerging-market stocks excluding China over the past year top the net buying of mainland China stocks.

: Courting Beijing’s further displeasure with Japan, Taiwan presidential candidate Hou Yu-ih begins a three-day visit to meet with Japanese lawmakers.

: Center-left Asahi criticizes Defense of Japan 2023 for insufficiently answering the public’s concerns about national defense and for leaving ambiguities by saying that decisions on the measures to be taken to deal with individual strike capabilities will be made “in light of individual and concrete situations.”

: Owners of Japanese restaurants in China fear ruin from Chinese restrictions on Japanese seafood.

: Ten Chinese and Russian naval vessels pass through the Soya Strait between Cape Soya in the northernmost prefecture of Hokkaido and the Russian island of Sakhalin in the first China-Russia joint naval vessel sailing near Japan since September 2022.

: Numerous Chinese publications denounce the Defense of Japan 2023 as grossly interfering in Chinese internal affairs and provoking regional tensions. Far from being a military threat, China is a staunch force for protecting world peace and stability, though certain countries have frequently sent ships and aircraft to relevant waters to show off force for their own interests, which has seriously aggravated regional tensions. China and Russia’s defense cooperation is on the basis of no alliance, no confrontation, and no targeting any third party, is committed to safeguarding regional and world peace and stability and poses no threat to any country. China has lodged stern representations with the Japanese side.

: A professor at Dalian Maritime University’s School of law suggests that China add more weight to its opposition to Japan’s discharge of nuclear-contaminated water from the damaged Fukushima Daiichi Nuclear Power Plant into the sea.

: Japan releases its 2023 Defense White Paper saying that the international community is facing its greatest trial since World War II and has entered a new era of crisis. This includes China rapidly enhancing its military capability qualitatively and quantitatively, including nuclear and missile forces.

: Referencing the abrupt replacement of Foreign Minister Qi Gang with his predecessor Wang Yi, an Asahi editorial urges an end to the “Wolf Warrior” diplomacy that has characterized Chinese diplomats, including both Qin and Wang.

: A new report entitled “Asia’s Future at a Crossroads: A Japanese Strategy for Peace and Sustainable Prosperity” advocates a new Shin-Bei Jiritsu policy親米自立 policy under which Japan will pursue a more pro-active middle power diplomacy to mitigate US-China rivalry, avoid a sharp division in Asia, and prevent great power conflict — a more autonomous foreign policy that is close to but not solely dependent on the United States.

: Describing Ino’s July 23 comments as carrying a provocative undertone, a Global Times editorial asks whether these were Ino’s private opinions or whether they represent Japan’s official stance.

: According to the China Association of Automobile Association, Japanese automakers’ market share in the region has fallen from 20% last year to 14.9% in the first half of 2023 even as EV sales in China reached over 2 million through the first five months of the year, up 51.5% year on year.

: China and Russia conclude a four-day military exercise in the Sea of Japan to, according to the Chinese defense ministry, “enhance strategic cooperation between the two countries and strengthen their ability to jointly safeguard regional peace and stability.”

: At the behest of the United States, Japan strengthens export regulations that block China from manufacturing cutting-edge semiconductor products.

: As China is the largest export market for Japan’s semiconductor equipment manufacturers, Chinese chip analysts predict that Japanese restrictions will undermine its companies’ global competitiveness.

: Japan’s Minister of State for Defense Ino Toshiro says that Japan would likely come to Taiwan’s aid if a Chinese invasion provoked the same outpouring in international support as for Ukraine but concedes that Tokyo had not yet decided what form that support would take.

: Widow of former Prime Minister Abe Shinzo, Abe Akie, visits Taiwan, meeting President Tsai Ing-wen and Vice-President William Lai and pledging to do everything she can to foster a strong friendship between the two sides.

: In their first in-person exchange in four years, JSDF officers meet Chinese military personnel and reaffirm the need for dialogue despite what LTG Jing Jianfeng, deputy chief of staff at the Joint Staff Department of the Central Military Commission, calls severe difficulties between the two countries.

: Industry Minister Nishimura Yasutoshi says that Beijing rebuffed the Japanese government’s repeated requests to have experts from both countries meet to discuss from a scientific standpoint the upcoming discharge of treated contaminated water into the ocean.

: Kishida, in Jeddah as the first stop in a tour of the Middle East, stresses the need for a free and open Indo-Pacific and argues against unilateral attempts to “change the status quo,” with China and Russia in mind.

: Japan Forum for Strategic Studies holds its third simulation this year of a two-day war game in response to a supposed Chinese invasion of Taiwan.

: In a brief exchange at the ASEAN Plus Three meeting in Jakarta, State Councillor Wang Yi criticizes Japan for discharging allegedly contaminated water from the Fukushima nuclear plant into the ocean with Foreign Minister Hayashi objecting to Wang’s politicization of the issue after a report by the UN’s International Atomic Energy Agency said that it met safety levels.

: Referencing concerns raised by the Chinese government’s ordinance requiring foreign countries to fully disclose cosmetic products’ ingredients and their ratios a Japanese government source advises (1) maintaining an overwhelming advantage in technological capabilities; (2) entering the market with sole capital as much as possible; (3) even when forming joint ventures, not readily handing over information on technology and suppliers; and (4) each company checking its supply chain, including parts manufacturers.

: Chinese state media report that the country’s coast guard has taken “necessary control measures” to drive away a Japanese fishing vessel that entered “territorial waters” around the disputed Diaoyu/Senkaku Islands and “urged the Japanese side to immediately cease all illegal activities in the waters and ensure that similar incidents do not recur.”

: Japanese government signs a new partnership agreement with NATO to enhance security coordination with the organization with Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg explicitly referencing concern China’s military buildup.

: Political science professor Nako Eto attributes recent assertive remarks by Chinese diplomats as examples of the international discourse power—meaning the power to make others accept what is being said—strategy being pursued by Xi Jinping’s administration.

: China’s customs authority announces it will ban food imports from 10 Japanese prefectures over Tokyo’s plan to release treated nuclear wastewater into the ocean, despite the UN atomic agency’s ruling that the water meets international safety standards.

: A Japanese professor of international security rebuts China’s criticism of NATO opening an office in Tokyo, arguing that if Beijing really wants to forestall NATO or Europe from further security and defense engagement in the Indo-Pacific region, the best way would be to try to reassure Europeans that they will not need to pay attention to the region and will not be adversely affected by what happens here.

: Citing Tokyo’s decision to discharge treated radioactive water from the crippled Fukushima plant into the sea, China announces it will tighten its scrutiny on food from Japan and maintain curbs on some Japanese imports. The UN’s nuclear agency had earlier certified the safety of the decision.

: As part of efforts to reduce dependence on China, Japan, and the EU conclude a memorandum of understanding on sharing information on supply and demand for rare metals, wind power generators and other items, and for cooperation in research and development for mining and refining. This comes two days after they signed an MOU to strengthen cooperation in the field of semiconductors.

: China’s leading military newspaper describes Japan’s desire for a NATO liaison office in Tokyo as the first step towards the establishment of a NATO military support mechanism for Japan, thereby exposing its ambition to elevate its own status with the help of external forces.

: In a further example of deepening Japanese relations with Taiwan, Japanese financial firm SBI Holdings will create a company to help Taiwan’s Powerchip Semiconductor Manufacturing Corp to establish a foundry and research lab for the development of more advanced chips.

: A draft EU-Japan joint statement to be released at a summit scheduled for July 13 in Brussels sets out plans to bolster the EU-Japan security partnership in light of the threats posed by Beijing and Moscow.

: More than 80 members of a Japan Association for the Promotion of International Trade (JAPIT) delegation led by President Yohei Kono and including Okinawa Gov. Denny Tamaki visit Beijing. This is the first such visit in four years and, according to Global Times, represents the Japanese business community’s hope to enhance trade cooperation with China, “and Okinawa’s pro-peace voices will be heard.”

: Speaking at a Taipei forum, former director-general of the Japan Defense Agency Tamazawa Tokuichiro says that China has insufficient strength to invade Taiwan, which would need at least 1.3 million troops, which it is not capable of transporting.

: Attending the International Forum for Trilateral Cooperation, an annual event organized by Beijing, Tokyo, and Seoul since 2011, State Councillor Wang Yi urges Japan and South Korea to foster a sense of strategic autonomy from the West and cooperate with Beijing to revitalize Asia, saying “No matter how blonde you dye your hair, how sharp you shape your nose, you can never become a European or American, you can never become a Westerner.”

: Aiming to counter Chinese restrictions on the free flow of data across borders, Japan and ASEAN will establish a digital innovation center in Jakarta that will begin operations in late August.

: Jiji reports that Japanese companies operating in China are bracing for employee arrests and other risks after China’s revised anti-espionage law took effect. A particular source of concern is that what constitutes acts of espionage is opaque under the law.

: Chinese media announce that a PLAN flotilla led by a Type 075 amphibious assault ship recently broke the first island chain from straits south of Japan, marking the first time that this type of large warship was reported operating in vicinity of Japan. They report it “could” serve to give those with a guilty conscience a warning, including “Taiwan independence” secessionists and external interference forces.

: In an extended deterrence dialogue between Japanese and US diplomatic and defense officials held at a Missouri air force base, the US conveys its intention to visibly deploy strategic weapons around Japan. With South Korea seen as a vital partner and the US and the ROK having agreed on the periodic deployment of strategic nuclear submarines there, Japan and the United States are believed to have discussed cooperation regarding extended deterrence among the three countries.

: LDP Secretary-General Motegi Toshimitsu holds talks with Taiwan Vice Premier Cheng Wen-tsan at the LDP’s Tokyo headquarters where they are believed to have discussed China’s increasing military pressure on Taiwan and the future of Japan-Taiwan relations.

: A Chinese survey vessel is detected in the waters near the Senkaku Islands in Okinawa Prefecture, though there is no intrusion into Japanese territorial waters.

: Sankei Shimbun terms Tamaki’s remarks that preparedness for the safety of Okinawa residents causes them anxiety “bizarre” since China taking aim at Okinawa as evidence by Xi Jinping’s June 4 remarks calling for deepening exchanges between “Ryukyu” and China.

: In response to China and Russia strengthening capabilities to attack satellites, the SDF have been using SpaceX’s Starlink satellite constellation on a trial basis since March and moving toward fully making use of them from the next fiscal year.

: Kishida, visiting Okinawa, stresses the need to strengthen defense capabilities on the Nansei Islands, “which now faces the harshest and most complicated security environment in the postwar era.” Okinawa Gov. Denny Tamaki counters that strengthening defense capabilities is causing anxiety among the people of the prefecture; he opposes deployment of SDF long-range missiles, saying that Okinawa could become a target for attack.

: To counter Chinese efforts to create anxiety over Japan’s planned release of discharge of water from the damaged Fukushima No. 1 nuclear power plant, the Japanese government embarks on a major public relations campaign to stress the safety of the discharge.

: In the 18th intrusion this year, four Chinese coast guard Haijing vessels sail near the contested Diaoyu/Senkaku Islands for around two hours.

: Japanese retailer Uniqlo’s ambitious goal of more than tripling sales to $71 billion in 10 years faces a stumbling block from trend among young China shoppers for guochao, “China chic,” in what had been a top market for Uniqlo.

: Huawei Technologies is seeking licensing fees from roughly 30 small-to-midsize Japanese companies for the use of patented technology, Wireless communication modules using Huawei’s patented technology are indispensable for connected Internet of Things (IoT) networks, and are being adopted in autonomous driving, automated factories, medicine, power, and logistics.

: A senior Chinese researcher employed by Japan’s National Institute of Advanced Science and Technology is arrested on charges that he leaked AIST trade secrets to a Chinese company.

: A lengthy article in Nikkei discusses the “mini Ryukyu boom” that followed Xi Jinping’s comments on the “deep relationship” between China and Fujian and comments by a museum curator that referred to Chinese sovereignty and the Diaoyu/Senkaku islands.

: Although global chip companies seeking to move their supply chains out of China have poured over $14 billion dollars into Japan, problems of land acquisition have arisen. Taiwan’s TSMC, wanting a second fab in Kumomoto since it prefers clusters of factories, not single ones, has run afoul of Japanese law limiting development of forests and land set aside for agriculture

: Enabled by an April change in guidelines, the Japanese coast guard and MSDF are preparing for a joint response to an armed attack, due to concerns that the Chinese coast guard could work with the Chinese military in a potential invasion against Japan.

: In a bid to counter China’s increasing expansion into the subcontinent under its Belt and Road Initiative, Japan provides full support to an 80-km road India is developing in its northeastern region bordering China that links to neighboring Bangladesh.

: Waseda University Professor Todo Yasuyuki calculates a disastrous drop in production from an 80% reduction in Chinese and Taiwanese imports for makers of electrical machinery and equipment such as household appliances, consumer electronics, and industrial equipment and producers of information and communications equipment due to conflict. He advocates risk reduction through friendshoring and reshoring, bearing in mind risks involved in domestic supply chains as well, such as earthquakes and volcano eruptions.

: Japanese analysts believe that Xi Jinping’s mention of “deep exchanges” between China and Okinawa in the context of the Diaoyu/Senkaku Islands are an attempt by the Chinese government to put pressure on Japan as Tokyo intensifies its involvement in the Taiwan issue.

: Japan joins Australia, Canada, New Zealand, the UK, and the US in a Joint Declaration Against Trade-Related Economic Coercion and Non-Market Policies and Practices, clearly directed against China, that expresses “serious concern over trade-related economic coercion and non-market policies and practices that undermine the functioning of and confidence in the rules-based multilateral trading system.”

: Noting that China’s aid donations have trapped recipient countries in debt while allowing the Chinese access to local ports and other infrastructure, Japan approves a major revision to its development aid policy that focuses on maritime and economic security and its national interests while helping developing nations overcome compound challenges amid China’s growing global influence. The revision to the Development Cooperation Charter comes two years early, underscoring the sense of urgency in addressing widening China concern and other global challenges such as the impact of Russia’s war on Ukraine.

: China, which has been concerned for several years about the formation of an Asian NATO, criticizes news that the US, Taiwan, and Japan are to share real-time data from naval reconnaissance drones to strengthen coordination in the event of a Chinese attack on Taiwan.

: Japan conveys “strong concern” after a Chinese naval ship enters Japan’s waters near Yakushima Island. Separately, two China Coast Guard vessels enter Japan’s territorial waters around the Senkaku/Diaoyu Islands and attempt to approach a Japanese fishing boat.

: To save Japan’s dwindling domestic defense industrial sector, the Diet enacts a bill enabling it to buy the factories and other facilities of beleaguered companies that make equipment deemed indispensable for the Self-Defense Forces and outsource their operations to other companies.

: Japan announces that it is joining the US and Australia in a $95 million undersea cable project that will connect East Micronesia island nations to improve networks in the Indo-Pacific region where China is increasingly expanding its influence. Completion is expected around 2025.

: Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Co. announces plans to build its second Japanese plant in Kumamoto Prefecture, though has no plans to introduce advanced chip manufacturing processes into it. The government will provide a subsidy of up to $3.41 billion for the project, which has been joined by Sony and Denso corporations.

: Japanese companies Nidec and Renesas will partner to develop a power-efficient drive system for electric vehicles to keep pace with growing demand in China. A prototype is expected by the end of the year.

: Yomiuri editorializes on the need to deepen multilateral cooperation in light of China’s repeated provocations in and around the Taiwan Strait and the South China Sea.

: In a 40-minute meeting on the sidelines of the Shangri-La Dialogue summit, Japanese DM Hamada expresses deep concerns about the situation in the East China and South China seas to counterpart Gen. Li Shangfu, with Li replying that China-Japan relations are “not all about the Diaoyu [Senkaku] Islands and should be viewed from a long-term and big picture perspective.”

: Responding to questions from a Diet member, the government discloses that 39 students from six of China’s so-called Seven Sons of National Defense—seven universities that are believed to have close ties to the Chinese military’s weapons development programs—were studying at Japanese universities as of fiscal 2020.

: Repeating the CCP mantra, Huang Xingyuan, representative director of the Japan-China Friendship Center, complains that Japan should cease following the US by labelling China its biggest strategic challenge and refrain from interfering in Taiwan. He stresses that under such circumstances, people-to-people diplomacy has become more significant.

: Japan’s new destroyers will be equipped with more vertical launchers that enable them to fire over 30% more interceptor missiles than existing destroyers as well as SM-6 missiles designed to shoot down hypersonic glide weapons.

: Chinese Commerce Minister Wang Wentao urges Japan to halt its semiconductor export controls, terming them a “wrongdoing” that seriously violates international economic and trade rules.

: Japan Coast Guard sources reveal that China Coast Guard vessels have been navigating around the contested Diaoyu/Senkaku Islands since March using automatic identification system (AIS) equipment.

: China’s Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Mao Ning warns against Kishida’s attendance at the NATO summit, says that NATO’s eastward foray into the Asia-Pacific “undermines regional peace and stability” and that countries in the area “should be on high alert.”

: With Chinese and Russian killer satellites in mind, Japan reportedly plans to work with the United States and others to monitor outer space. Specifically, it will participate in the Combined Space Operations Center, operated by the US, Britain, Australia, and Canada, which monitors outer space around the clock, including satellites and space debris.

: Referencing NATO’s planned liaison office in Tokyo, China’s leading military newspaper accuses Japan of applying for a job as doorman of NATO.

: China’s Ministry of Commerce terms Japan’s decision to impose curbs on the shipment of 23 types of chipmaking technology an abuse of export control measures that goes against free trade and international trade regulations.

: Draft edition of Japan’s 2023 defense report says that China may move up its plan to build a world-class military by the mid-21st century and states that increasing Russian and Chinese military activities in waters around Japan seem “to clearly intend a show of force.”

: Chinese Vice Foreign Minister Sun Weidong summons Japanese Ambassador to China Tarumi Hideo to lodge representations over the G7 Hiroshima Summit that Japan chaired.

: Minister of National Defense Li Shangfu and counterpart Hamada Yasukazu  talk for the first time via the long-delayed direct telephone line dedicated to the maritime and air liaison mechanism between the two ministries.

: Reuters contrasts dismal economic news from China with a brighter picture in Japan. As GDP growth forecasts were revised downward, the RMB fell below seven to the dollar for the first time in six months while Citi’s economic surprise index had one of its steepest falls on record. In Japan, first-quarter GDP growth exceeded expectations with the Nikkei rising about 30,000 for the first time in 20 months and the broader Topix index hitting its highest level in 33 years.

: In an ominous sign, China’s Coast Guard now has 157 large vessels, nearly quadruple the number of a decade ago, when Japan Coast Guard large ships outnumbered Chinese counterparts by 51 to 40.

: In a display of power ahead of the G7 summit hosted by Japan, a four-ship flotilla led by one of the Chinese navy’s most powerful warships, the Type 055 guided missile destroyer Lhasa, performs a 12-day counterclockwise circumnavigation of Japan beginning from the Strait of Tsushima, progressing through Tsugaru, and on to the Izu Island chain south of Tokyo.

: Japan protests through diplomatic channels Chinese Ambassador Wu Jianghao’s statement that if Japan links Taiwan to its own security, the Japanese people “would be dragged into the fire.”

: Referencing a joint call by Kishida and South Korean leader Yoon that the two states will work with Washington to address “growing security threats in Asia” during the former’s trip to Seoul, South China Morning Post reports that the Chinese government is concerned that a military alliance among South Korea, Japan, and the US may be developing.

: Kishida, visiting Nairobi, pledges Japanese support in developing Mombasa, the largest port in East Africa and facing the Indian Ocean. Chinese companies have been active in infrastructure there, resulting in massive debts to Kenya.

: Industry data reveal that total sales of Japanese auto brands in China fell 32% year-on-year in the first quarter of 2023. Japanese firms now account for 18% of China’s new vehicle sales, down from 20% in 2022, 22% in 2021, and 24% in 2020. Mazda, Nissan, and Honda have been particularly hard hit.

: 61% of respondents to a Yomiuri poll favor amending the constitution while 33% are against doing so, with the gap between those in favor and against amendment widening to 28 percentage points.

: Of 1,967 people who respond to an Asahi poll, 52% say the constitution is good, down from 58% last year, while another 52% said revisions are needed and 38% say the Constitution is not good, the highest rate since 2013.

: Asahi editorializes against the government for failing to listen to the people of Ishigakijima. When the city of Ishigaki agreed to host a GSDF base in 2018, it was explained that the missiles to be deployed there would be of a “defensive nature” to prevent enemy landings on the island but now these missiles could have a range capable of reaching beyond Japan, possibly turning Ishigakijima into a target of enemy attack.

: NATO reportedly plans to open a liaison office in Tokyo, the first of its kind in Asia, which will allow the alliance to conduct periodic consultations with Japan and key partners in the region such as South Korea, Australia, and New Zealand as China emerges as a new challenge,. Japan will in turn create an independent mission to NATO, separating it from the embassy in Belgium, where it is currently based.

: Aided by multibillion-dollar government subsidies, BYD Auto plans to have 100 showrooms in Japan by 2025, with its Dolphin hatchback and Seal sedans due to enter the market this year.

: 80% of respondents to an Asahi survey report worry that Japan will be caught up in a US-China clash over Taiwan, with 56% saying that the SDFs role should be limited to rearguard support to the US military.

: Speaking at the Japan National Press Club in Tokyo, Ambassador Wu Jianghao objects to Japan describing China as its greatest strategic challenge, its cooperation with “certain countries” to oppose and contain China, and its accelerated military buildup. Describing the statement that a Taiwan emergency is a Japanese emergency as “absurd and dangerous,” Wu continues that the G7, which had harsh words for China, has become a political tool of some countries to wantonly interfere in the internal affairs of other countries and suppress their development and progress.

: In a further effort to de-risk the scarce metals supply chain from China, Honda and battery manufacturer GS Yuasa Corporation will receive a ¥158.7 billion subsidy from METI.

: Chinese ambassador to Japan Wu Jianghao describes the case of a detained Astellas Pharma employee as a spy incident that touches on China’s national security; it is not China that should back down, but rather individuals and organizations that are making people like the Astellas employee engage in espionage.

: Speaking at a regularly scheduled Ministry of Defense press conference, spokesperson Senior Colonel Tan Kafei accuses Japan of distorting facts and spreading the China threat “cliché.”

: Dong Yuyu, a former senior editor at CCP-affiliated Guangming Daily is charged with allegedly leaking information to multiple Japanese diplomats.

: Aiming to reduce reliance on China for crucial materials in EV batteries and motors, METI will subsidize up to half the cost of mine development and smelting projects of important minerals by Japanese companies. Lithium, manganese, nickel, cobalt, graphite and rare earths are the main targets for support.

: Aiming to check China’s influence after Kiribati cut ties with Taiwan, the MSDF begins its largest Indo-Pacific tour to date, include a port call in Kiribati. A total of 17 countries and regions will be visited, up from 12 in 2022, with a focus on Pacific Islands nations.

: Prime Minister Kishida sends ritual masakaki offering to the Yasukuni Shine at its spring festival and China issues ritual objection. Although Kishida sends the offering as a private person, the masakaki is sent under his name as prime minister. A cross-party group of around 90 lawmakers, including senior vice ministers and parliamentary vice ministers, visits the shrine, as it regularly does. China issues a ritual protest.

: Former LDP Secretary General Nikai Toshihiro, known for his pro-China views, is named the new chairman of the Japan-China Parliamentary Friendship Association.

: Casting doubt on Japan’s plans to improve its capacity to protect itself, the SDF recruit less than half the planned number of fixed-term personnel for fiscal 2022.

: A Chinese military commentator describes Japan’s new Official Security Assistance initiative as part of its plan to strengthen its military presence in Indo-Pacific on the pretext of maintaining “freedom, democracy and rule of law.”

: Communique of the G7 foreign ministers, meeting in Karuizawa preparatory to the G7 summit hosted by Japan, calls on China to abstain from threats, coercion, intimidation, or the use of force, expresses serious concern about the situation in the East and South China Seas, and strongly opposes any unilateral attempts to change the status quo by force or coercion.

: Criticisms grow of Indonesian President Joko Widodo’s 2015 choice of China over Japan to build a high-speed railway after Kereta Cepat Indonesia China, which is 40% owned by Chinese concerns, proposed in December adding another 30 years to its 50-year concession, meaning that the railway would be under China’s influence until early in the 22nd century.

: Recognizing that cognitive warfare has become the sixth domain of operations in addition to land, sea, air, outer space and cyberspace, Japan’s Cabinet Secretariat will develop a system to deal with information warfare designed by unnamed countries to formulate favorable international public opinion toward their country or to confuse their opponents.

: Chinese analyst Da Zhigang opines that the abortive assassination attempt against Prime Minister Kishida has burst the myth of Japan being a secure country, casting doubt among residents that the Hiroshima G7 Summit will be safe, while researcher Chen Yang believes such attacks are largely due to Japan’s increasingly resentful society, caused by the sluggish economic growth and rising prices.

: Japanese tech investment titan SoftBank decides to sell nearly all of its stake in Alibaba to limit exposure to China. SoftBank was an early investor in the Chinese internet giant founded by Jack Ma but began to offload its shares last year in response to the PRC’s regulatory crackdown on the financial sector.

: Although not reaching the UN goal of contributing 0.7 % of gross national income to Official Development Assistance, Japan is third in the world in the value of its contributions, after the US and Germany.

: Hideji Suzuki, one of 17 Japanese nationals detained in China since 2015 and imprisoned for six years, says Japan failed him. He applauds Japan’s somewhat stronger reaction to the current detainee but predicts that the outcome won’t change much.

: Contrasting the failure of Mitsubishi Heavy Industry’s commercial aircraft building program with the achievements of China’s state-owned COMAC, both begun in 2008, two aviation executives—one American and one Japanese—attribute COMAC’s success to state ownership and a significant domestic market.

: As part of plans to develop counterstrike capabilities against Chinese expansionism, the Japanese government awards a contract to Mitsubishi Heavy Industries for submarine-launched standoff missiles.

: An Asahi editorial terms China’s aggressive moves toward Taiwan counterproductive and serve only to undermine its international reputation.

: Seeking to establish a secure supply chain for lithium against Chinese companies, which hold the top global share in manufacturing batteries and have been investing heavily in mining projects around the world, Sumitomo Metal Mining starts talks with resources producers for joint production in such countries as Argentina and Chile, leveraging the new technology to obtain concessions.

: Japanese foreign ministry’s annual diplomatic bluebook describes Beijing as intensifying its attempts to unilaterally change the status quo by force or coercion in the maritime regions and airspace of the East and South China Seas and calls China’s approach to international relations and military trends the greatest strategic challenge ever to the international order.

: At a meeting of foreign, defense, and coast guard officials from the two countries, the first since May 2019, Japan urges China to immediately cease intrusions by its coast guard ships into Japanese waters around the disputed Diaoyu/Senkaku Islands, its maritime expansion in the East China and South China seas, its repeated dissemination of information lacking a scientific basis about the planned release into the sea of treated water from the Fukushima No. 1 nuclear power plant, and its continued gas field development activities on the Chinese side of the median line between the two countries in the East China Sea. China demands that Japan stop violating China’s sovereignty and harming its maritime interests in the East China Sea and the Taiwan Strait and warns Tokyo against interfering with Taiwan issues. With regard to the water release from the Fukushima nuclear plant, the Chinese side says the matter should be handled in a scientific and safe way. The two sides affirm yet again a long-delayed plan to set up a hotline between their defense authorities.

: Japan Display Inc., formed a decade ago by a government-brokered merger among the LCD businesses of Hitachi, Toshiba, and Sony announces a tie-up with China’s HKC Corp. to cooperate on next-generation technology for displays.

: Japan expresses concern with China’s air operations close to Okinawan islands during its three-day punitive exercises simulating an attack on Taiwan a week earlier.

: In his first public comments since an employee was arrested in late March on espionage charges, Astellas chief executive Naoki Okamura says the pharmaceutical company plans further steps to diversify its supply chain in China but in view of the country’s huge market is not “currently” considering an exit.

: A China Daily columnist applauds Foreign Minister Hayashi’s visit to Beijing and agreement to work together on such matters as holding dialogue regularly, deepening mutual understanding and trust, and defusing tensions. However, “Tokyo should squarely face its militaristic past, reflect on its historical mistakes and apologize to the victims of Japanese aggression before and during World War II.”

: Diet deliberations begin on legislation to establish a new fund that would help pay for a massive defense buildup over the next five years: 43 trillion yen ($326 billion) of which new revenue sources must be found to cover about 14.6 trillion yen.

: Recognizing that the new OSA program is another policy response to China’s rapid military buildup and aggressive maritime expansion that at present does not include supplying lethal weapons to four countries, Asahi cautions that it could undermine stability in the region unless combined with diplomatic efforts to expand dialogue with Beijing and build a regional order that is helpful for coexistence and co-prosperity.

: Noting that China continues to engage in hegemonic activities in the South China Sea and is turning the area into a military stronghold and threatening Japan’s sovereignty over the Senkaku Islands, Yomiuri states that cooperation with more countries is essential in dealing with China but says it is important to avoid a situation in which Japan’s provision of defense equipment foments conflict.

: Yomiuri criticizes the government for the failure of its measures to prevent the outflow of manufacturing technology related to high-performance, rare-earth magnets.

: Visiting with NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg in Brussels, Foreign Minister Hayashi states that what concerns observers the most would be an effort by China to unify with Taiwan by force.

: In the longest intrusion since Japan nationalized the East China Sea islands in 2012 four Chinese Coast Guard vessels stay in the area around the disputed Diaoyu/Senkaku Islands for more than 80 hours, breaking the previous record of over 72 hours set in December 2022.

: Yomiuri terms the four-hour meeting between Chinese and Japanese foreign ministers “extremely disappointing …because the Chinese side did not give any indication that it wished to resolve pending issues.”

: Chinese papers report that senior diplomat Wang Yi told Hayashi that the fundamental reason for strained relations is that “some forces in Japan are deliberately following the US wrong China policy, trying to provoke and smear China’s core interests.” Japanese papers report that Hayashi lodged a stern protest over China’s recent detention of a Japanese national and expressed Tokyo’s serious concern over the repeated entry of Chinese vessels into waters near the Japanese-controlled Senkaku Islands while underscoring the importance of peace and stability across the Taiwan Strait amid increasing Chinese military pressure in the region.

: Consonant with its new Official Security Assistance program, Japan will help Bangladesh, Fiji, Malaysia, and the Philippines to improve their deterrence capabilities through the provision of defense equipment and other means to counter China and Russia and help stabilize the Indo-Pacific region.

: A former GSDF chief of staff laments the absence of a clear plan to evacuate the 25,000 Japanese nationals currently in Taiwan in the event of a Chinese attack on the island.

: New GSDF camp on Ishigaki formally opens, marking the completion of a plan to fill a hole in the GSDF’s coverage of the Nansei islands; troops having already been deployed to Yonaguni, Miyako, and Amami Oshima islands.

: Foreign Minister Hayashi visits Beijing. According to Global Times, Foreign Minister Qin Gang called on Japan not to join the US in chip restrictions; having suppressed Japan’s semiconductor industry, it is now using the same tactics against China.

: Joining with the US and the Netherlands to prevent advanced semiconductor technologies from being used for military purposes due to China’s growing military pressure against Taiwan, Japan’s trade ministry solicits public comments on hopes to restrict exports of 23 items such as equipment to remove impurities generated during the semiconductor manufacturing process and machines to produce semiconductor films.

: Masahiro Ichijo, retiring head of the coast guard headquarters with responsibility for Okinawa and the Diaoyu/Senkaku Islands, says in an interview with Asahi that it is important to keep the score even with Chinese Coast Guard vessels in terms of security activities.

: Meeting a delegation from Taiwanese communities in Kyoto, Osaka, Kobe, Shikoku, and Hiroshima, President Tsai Ing-wen thanks Taiwanese in Japan for help in deepening ties between the two countries.

: Chinese security authorities recently detain a Japanese national in his 50s, an executive of Japanese company Astella’s local subsidiary, on unspecified charges.

: Kyodo discloses that Kishida declined to meet with former Ambassador to Japan Kong Xuanyou before Kong’s departure in February. According to an unnamed government source, a reciprocal approach was considered “necessary,” since Xi Jinping did not meet former Ambassador to China Yokoi Yutaka when he departed Beijing in 2020.

: Chinese exports decline in dollar terms for five straight months since last October as Western buyers reduce orders amid high inflation and a gloomy economic outlook.

: Against a backdrop of concerns about growing Chinese influence across the Indo-Pacific that includes major infrastructure investment under the Belt and Road Initiative, fueling development but also raising concerns about unsustainable debt in Global South nations, Kishida backs Indian PM Narendra Modi’s appeals to support less developed countries, announcing over $75 billion worth of infrastructure and security assistance for the Indo-Pacific; he also invites Modi to attend the G7 summit in Hiroshima in May.

: Two Chinese Haijing-class coast guard vessels sail close to a Japanese fishing boat in Japanese-administered territorial waters of the Diaoyu/Senkaku Islands on March 17.

: Observing Kishida’s activist diplomacy with South Korea, Germany, and India, Global Times accuses Tokyo of using external forces as “sub-ruler of Washington’s headquarters” to target China while pursuing its own sinister agenda of military expansion.

: Nikkei describes German Chancellor Olaf Scholz’s visit to Tokyo as seeking cooperation with Japan to reduce German dependence on Chinese raw materials. Although Japan is Germany’s second largest trading partner in Asia, volumes in 2022 were less than a fifth of those with China. The Associated Press reports that the two countries’ defense ministers met separately to confirm the German armed forces’ continued engagement in the Indo-Pacific region and stronger military cooperation between the two countries.

: GSDF opens a garrison on Ishigaki Island adding to those built since 2016 on Yonaguni, Miyakojima, and Amami-Oshima, with the defense ministry commenting that this closes the vacuum in the area in response to China’s aggressive maritime expansion.

: Taiwan’s High Speed Rail Corporation confirms that it will buy 12 new shinkansen bullet trains from a Hitachi-Toshiba consortium; THSR was the first overseas company to adopt the shinkansen.

: China’s Coast Guard enters waters around disputed East China Sea islets on Wednesday to counter what it called the incursion of Japanese vessels into Chinese territorial waters.

: Reviewing China’s National People’s Congress, Yomiuri editorializes that Xi’s intolerance of any dissent bodes ill for world peace and urges Japan and the United States to enhance their ability to respond to any contingency so that Xi will be discouraged from attempting to change the status quo by force.

: Xinhua reports that despite “raging” opposition both at home and abroad, Japan still intends to push ahead with its plan to dump nuclear-contaminated wastewater into the Pacific Ocean from the damaged Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power plant in this spring or summer. Japan’s wastewater discharge plan will destroy the livelihoods of local fishermen and efforts they have made for over a decade to revive the industry.

: To establish a supply chain that bypasses China, Japanese trading house Sojitz and the Japan Organization for Metals and Energy Security will invest $134.7 million in Australia’s Lynas Rare Earths that will supply about 30% of domestic Japanese demand for the heavy rare earths.

: Japan’s second attempt to launch the H-3 rocket on March 7 fails, as had its first attempt on Feb. 17. Coming after a two-year delay from the initial schedule, these could be a setback for the country’s entire space policy.

: Chinese government announces a 7.2% rise, to $225 billion, in the country’s defense budget for 2023, though foreign analysts estimate that actual military spending may be 1.1 to 2 times higher than stated in the official budget. The official figure exceeds the projected growth rate of 5%.

: A national political advisor from the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region (HKSAR) says that to deepen understanding of the Party and its history among the Hong Kong public, a permanent memorial hall of the history of War of Resistance against Japanese Aggression (1931-45) and an exhibition hall of the CCP should be established as soon as possible

: Prompted by the revelation that an MSDF captain improperly briefed a retired vice admiral on several occasions in violation of the December 2014 Protection of Specially Designated Secrets Law, a Ministry of Defense committee will by March 31 compile a report outlining steps to prevent future leaks.

: Global Times belatedly reports that after a three-year hiatus, the 13th China-Japan Friendship Adult Ceremony was held at the Embassy of Japan in China on Feb. 25 with Ambassador Tarumi Hideo expressing hope that people will “pay attention to and concern about each other’s culture, society and history in the future and through a variety of communication to enhance mutual understanding, and write a new chapter in the development of Japan and Chinese relations.”

: In a stunning graphic, Renmin Ribao criticizes Tokyo Electric Power’s decision to release up to 500 tons of nuclear-contaminated water per day since it may contain large amounts of radioactive carbon-14 and other radioactive isotopes, adding that it takes tens or hundreds of thousands of years for some atomic isotopes to decay.

: Japan Defense Ministry reports that Chinese drones caused the ASDF to scramble jets 12 times since August 2021 whereas in the eight years before, from September 2013, the ASDF had only three such scrambles.

: A Yomiuri editorial hopes the Japanese government will consider measures, including a review of legal provisions, to enable it to investigate the actual situation on smaller islands, one of which, uninhabited Yanaha, was 51% quietly acquired by a Chinese-affiliated company two years ago.

: Preparing to enter the Japanese market so that Japan can bypass China in its rare-earth supply chain, Las Vegas-headquartered MP Materials produces a record volume of ores and is set to further increase production in the US.

: Jiji reports that on Feb. 8 the Changsha Intermediate People’s Court sentenced an unnamed Japanese man in his 50s to 12 years in prison for spying. The man had been held since July 2019 on unspecified charges. China is known to have detained 16 Japanese nationals on spying or other related charges since 2015.

: A tabletop wargame conducted by Japan’s Sasakawa Peace Foundation on a Taiwan contingency shows Japan losing as many as 144 fighter jets, with SDF casualties reaching up to 2,500. The US could lose up to 400 jets with over 10,000 soldiers killed or wounded—but China would fail to seize control of the island.

: Tokyo chip manufacturers, waiting for clear guidance on export controls for advanced chip technologies, report greatly increased orders as Chinese semiconductor companies seek to stockpile ahead of the implementation of the Japan-Netherlands-US agreement on tightening exports.

: Expressing concern about Tokyo’s moves to control semiconductor exports, China’s Ministry of Commerce says China hopes that Japan can abide by international rules, provide enterprises with a “fair, non-discriminatory and predictable” business environment and safeguard bilateral economic and trade cooperation.

: After a four-year gap, China and Japan resume diplomatic and security talks with the successive holding of the 29th regular consultation between China and Japan diplomatic authorities, the 17th China-Japan security dialogue, and the 16th China-Japan economic partnership consultation.

: Liz Truss, in Tokyo on her first overseas trip since stepping down as UK prime minister, says that the G7 and like-minded nations should cooperate to build a supply chain for resources such as rare-earths and other important minerals, export controls for cutting-edge technologies such as semiconductors, and infrastructure investment in developing countries “providing investment that doesn’t have strings attached, that doesn’t lead to a debt trap.” She adds that the G7 and Taiwan should work together economically to deter China.

: Foreign Minister Hayashi, speaking to Chinese counterpart Wang Yi on the sidelines of the Munich Security Conference, warns that entering a foreign country’s airspace without permission constitutes an airspace violation and urges China to prevent any recurrence the such incidents.

: GSDF holds a press viewing of Iron Fist, a joint Japan-U.S. training exercise, at the Hijudai maneuvering ground in Oita Prefecture on Saturday.

: Sumitomo Corporation announces that it will source rare earth elements for EVs without involving China.

: Asahi editorializes against the defense ministry’s decision to ease the requirements for the SDF to destroy trespassing foreign unmanned airborne vehicles including balloons and airships, which could heighten tensions in the region.

: Consensus is achieved between the LDP and coalition partner Komeito that permits the SDF to use weapons to protect citizens and property on the ground and ensure the safety of civilian aircraft, taking into account that human life would not be endangered if unmanned aircraft were to be shot down.

: Senior LDP defense policymaker and former Defense Minister Onadera Itsunori says that the flight of suspected Chinese surveillance balloons has shown that Japan and Taiwan need to share “critical” intelligence about aerial threats, adding that he visited Taiwan in January and been briefed about threats posed to the island by China.

: Japanese government will change the interpretation of Article 84 of the SDF Law which was intended for manned foreign aircraft to allow shooting down unmanned balloons. Specific conditions under which the use of weapons will be allowed are being worked out.

: A Chinese-affiliated company, i.e., not the Chinese government, buys about half the uninhabited isle of Yanahajima, located north of Okinawa Prefecture’s main island.

: As part of its envisaged counterattack capability, Japan will start building about 10 large ammunition depots for storing standoff weapons at SDF facilities, including in the Nansei Islands near Taiwan.

: Japanese government demands through diplomatic channels that the Chinese government confirm facts about three balloons that allegedly flew in Japanese airspace since November 2019 and take measures to prevent the recurrence of similar incidents.

: Australia’s Lowy Institute’s 2023 Asia Power Index assesses that Japan’s strengthening defense capabilities will not be enough to compensate for waning overall influence in Asia, opining that Japan’s contribution to a collective balancing strategy in response to China’s rise may be less than Washington hopes.

: Japanese government conveys concern to China over its Shupang-class survey ship entry into Japanese territorial waters around Yakushima Island, Kagoshima Prefecture. This is the first time a Shupang-class survey ship intruded into territorial waters in 2023, but it did so in November 2021 and five times in 2022.

: Philippine President Marcos, visiting Tokyo, agrees to strengthen defense ties with Japan amid China’s assertive actions in the South China Sea and growing fears over a possible Chinese invasion of Taiwan.

: China Daily editorializes that, by allowing US weapons to be sited on Japanese islands close to China’s Taiwan, Japan is foolishly tying itself to a time bomb.

: Meeting in Tokyo with Kishida, NATO Secretary-General Stoltenberg, referring to China by name, says that it is “bullying its neighbors, and threatening Taiwan,” and emphasizes the need for NATO and Japan to work together to address the challenge posed by China.

: Newly appointed Chinese Foreign Minister Qin Gang, speaking with counterpart Hayashi Yoshimasa for the first time, is quoted as hoping Japan will be “cautious in its words and deeds regarding major issues such as bilateral history and Taiwan, and stop provocations by right-wing forces on the issue of Diaoyu” [Senkaku], while Nikkei cites Hayashi as airing “serious concern” over intensifying Chinese military activities near Japan, including those with Russia during their 50-minute phone talk.

: Speaking to students at Tokyo’s Keio University, NATO Secretary-General Jens Stoltenberg calls for stronger cooperation and more “friends” for NATO in the Indo-Pacific region, adding that Russia and China “coming closer and the significant investments by China and new advanced military capabilities just underlines that China poses a threat, poses a challenge also to NATO allies.” Stoltenberg and Kishida agree to step up their partnership in security in cyberspace, space, defense and other areas.

: A Global Times editorial describes Stoltenberg’s speech as deserving high vigilance of the entire Asia-Pacific region and full of ominous omens.

: Chinese media report that its coast guard expelled Japanese ships that illegally entered China’s territorial waters around the Diaoyu/Senkaku Islands, citing unnamed experts’ opinion that expulsion was the right action to safeguard China’s sovereignty and territorial integrity and it displayed coast guard capabilities.

: Yomiuri reports that the Shinsei Maru with the Ishigaki mayor and Tokai University researchers commissioned by the city aboard is taking an environmental survey, the second this year, to assess the impact of garbage drifting to Uotsuri and other Senkaku/Diaoyu islands, as well as the damage to vegetation caused by goats. A Chinese Coast Guard vessel made a move to approach the boat, but was deterred by a vessel of the Japan Coast Guard that called for the Chinese vessel to leave. Tokyo protests through diplomatic channels.

: As part of growing efforts by manufacturers to protect supply chains by reducing their Chinese dependence, Sony reveals that as of the end of last year it had transferred production of cameras sold in the Japanese, US, and European markets to Thailand.

: Chinese embassy in Tokyo announces that the government will immediately resume issuing visas to Japanese nationals traveling to China, which had been suspended since Jan. 10.

: Bloomberg reports that the US has secured an agreement with the Netherlands and Japan to restrict exports of some advanced chip-making machinery to China.

: Global Times responds to the report of the restrictions by saying that efforts to contain China will not work since the country’s semiconductor firms are making all-out efforts at technologies for self-reliance. Earlier, the paper had accused the US of having “brutally beaten down” Japan’s semiconductor industry a century ago and warning that Japan’s current interests do not match those of the United States since the US has upstream suppliers in Europe that leave little room for Japan.

: State secrets in a report leaked by a former MSDF captain to his vice admiral former boss contain information on military satellite images that capture the movements of Chinese naval vessels and include intelligence provided by the US military.

: Chinese media criticize Japan and South Korea for tightening entry policies against China for purely political purposes as part of a negative publicity campaign against China.

: Interviewed by Nikkei, retired Gen. Isobe Koichi terms Xi Jinping’s recent policies incoherent and advises that appeasement will not work.

: Japanese government has reportedly approved a cruise missile with three interchangeable warheads for reconnaissance and radar jamming in addition to conventional use.

: Responding to the US-Japan statement that the Indo-Pacific region faces growing challenges, including from actions inconsistent with the rules-based international order by China, Chinese foreign ministry spokesperson Wang Wenbin describes it as an “ugly playbook jointly … to tarnish China’s image, interfere in China’s internal affairs and suppress China’s development [that] is packed with danger and hypocrisy” adding that “we firmly reject it and have conveyed strong demarches.”

: China Daily takes issue with the joint US-Japanese declaration of the 13th calling the PRC a country posing challenges with “actions inconsistent with the rules-based international order” and strongly suggests that the US has given the nod to Japan’s expansion of its military capability.

: Global Times accuses Japan of increasingly justifying its militarization under the pretext of so-called external threats. It says Tokyo should be wary of becoming a victim of the US or the Ukraine of East Asia.

: Global Times describes Kishida’s visit to Washington as bringing three “gifts”: 1. actively seeking to deepen the Japan-US alliance to show loyalty to the US Indo-Pacific strategy; 2. reporting military developments and “anti-China achievements” to the US in exchange for Washington’s support for Japan’s attempt to break through its exclusive self-defense policy; and 3. continuing to exaggerate the “China threat theory” to cover up its own military expansion and preparations for war.

: Defense Minister Hamada Yasukazu and Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin agree to simplify procedures for joint research and development of defense equipment by making only a single memorandum necessary for a project, as opposed to current practice that requires multiple memoranda for each item of research or trial, often taking several months apiece to prepare.

: At 2-plus-2 defense talks of the US and Japanese foreign and defense chiefs, the alliance enters a new phase of stepped up work on interoperability and the division of roles between the SDF and US forces to provide enhanced deterrence against China.

: 2+2 ministers of the US and Japan issue a joint statement saying that Article 5 of their security treaty, which obligates the US to defend Japan if it comes under attack, could be applied to space to protect Japanese satellites as China and Russia ramp up military activity in the arena

: Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Co. (TSMC), already building a facility in Japan with Sony, says it is considering a second plant there.

: UK Prime Minister Rishi Sunak says his country “will stand by Japan as China leverages its state power.”

: Reacting to the UK-Japan defense agreement, Global Times describes both as “down-and-out powers.”

: Chinese media describe the US-Japan 2+2 agreement as undermining peace and stability, quoting Chinese experts’ opinion that the result will be a more dangerous position for Japan, and will not be welcomed by regional countries.

: US Marine Corps announces plans to form a littoral regiment (MLR) to hold positions on Japan’s frontline islands within China’s sphere of influence and engage the enemy.

: Japan’s Ministry of Defense announces it is considering establishing a new cyber department at the National Defense Academy in fiscal 2027. Prior to its establishment, the GSDF will refashion its Signal School into the GSDF System Communications and Cyber School in April and increase the number of officers receiving cyberdefense training by 30% from the current 100 officers.

: Global Times scoffs at Japan’s intention to become the second country after the US to land astronauts on the moon and saying it would strengthen cooperation with the US to counter China’s space endeavors; the claim to be “second in history” while relying on another country’s technology is laughable and does not really count.

: Kishida visits G7 countries France, Italy, and the UK before his trip to Washington.

: In an effort to display solidarity among partners when China is stepping up maritime activities, the Ground Self-Defense Force’s First Airborne Brigade conducts the year’s first parachute drop training with units from the British and Australian armies for the first time.

: Center-right Yomiuri, Japan’s largest circulation daily, editorializes in favor of a more robust official development assistance program.

: Japanese defense officials are weighing a plan to build dozens of ammunition and weapons depots on far-flung southwestern islands in preparation for a potential Taiwan crisis.

: Japanese student recipients of a scholarship to study in Taiwan provided by the Friends of Shinzo Abe Association in Taiwan lay flowers at the statue of Abe in a Kaohsiung temple and praised his contributions to Taiwan-Japanese friendship.

: Head of Japan’s Ministry of Economy, Trade, and Industry (METI) Yasutoshi Nishimura urges Group of Seven (G7) advanced economies to take a coordinated approach at preventing the economic coercion that China has applied to some of its trading partners.

: In a further affirmation of deepening Japan-Taiwan ties, Fukuoka Financial Group Inc. (FFG) joins CTBC Financial Holding Co. (CTBC Holding) to smooth the way for companies from Taiwan to do business in southern Japan.

: According to Japan’s Defense Ministry, the Chinese aircraft carrier Liaoning returned to the East China Sea by sailing north between the main island of Okinawa Prefecture and Miyako Island after conducting drills in Pacific waters south of the prefecture last month. Fighter jets and helicopters based on the Liaoning took off from and landed a total of about 320 times around the islands of Okidaitojima and Kitadaitojima in Okinawa Prefecture between Dec. 17 and Saturday. This was the first operation by the Liaoning since May 2022, when more than 300 takeoffs and landings took place.

: Japanese government reports that it successfully intercepted a Chinese Guizhou WZ-7 “Soaring Dragon” drone in the Miyako Strait, marking the first time that Japanese authorities have acknowledged intercepting this specific type of drone.

: Amid China’s mounting military pressure in the region, the Japanese defense ministry will move command centers underground at four SDF facilities by fiscal 2028 and implement measures against electromagnetic pulse attacks at five Air Self-Defense Force bases by fiscal 2029 in preparation for such situations as an emergency in Taiwan.

: Japanese government is to provide comprehensive financial support to the defense industry to stem its decline, and will consider nationalization of some industries though only as a last resort.

: China Daily, in a four-part year end piece, admonishes Japan for a litany of transgressions including military expansion and decoupling.

: During the visit of Japanese parliamentarians to Taiwan, a Kaohsiung temple says it would commission and give to Japan a bronze statue of Prime Minister Abe, who had been a firm friend of Taiwan.

: Chinese coast guard vessels stay in territorial waters claimed by Japan for over 72 hours, the longest continuous intrusion since 2012.

: Chinese sources state that Xi ordered a Chinese carrier strike group to conduct drills that simulate attacks on Japan’s Nansei Islands beginning Dec. 16 in response to the Japanese government’s release of three major defense-related documents.

: Reports say Japan’s government will create the framework for utilization of space to strengthen the nation’s defense capabilities that includes a plan to increase the use of space by the SDF and coast guard, among others.

: Responding to claims by a Spanish NGO that China may have established two overseas police bases in Japan, the foreign ministry, apparently regarding the claims as credible, tells Beijing that any activities conducted that could infringe on Japan’s sovereignty are “absolutely unacceptable.”

: Japan’s largest convenience store chains, Lawson, Family Mart, and Seven-Eleven, are opening more outlets in China as they adapt business models to China’s more restrictive logistics network.

: Giant panda Eimei/Yong Ming, a resident of the Osaka zoo for 12 years, is appointed a special envoy for Sino-Japanese friendship, though it is unclear how the panda can play this role since he is to be repatriated in February.

: A squadron of Chinese ships sails through straits near Japan into the Western Pacific, while Beijing castigated Tokyo’s adoption of a new national security strategy that puts itself on a more offensive footing — largely as a result of the perceived threat from China.

: Japanese Defense Ministry releases new defense strategy which is highly critical of Chinese activities as “a matter of serious concern for Japan and the international community.”

: Japanese Cabinet approves three key security documents the main pillar of which legitimizes possession of counterstrike capabilities to destroy enemy missile launch sites and other military targets for self-defense, marking a major shift in postwar security policy.

: Xinhua reports opposition within Japan to the country’s new defense strategy, stating that hundreds of citizens held rallies in front of the prime minister’s official residence.

: Nikkei reports that the LDP’s junior coalition partner Komeito was able to pull the defense policy debate in a more dovish direction, changing “serious security threat” to an “unprecedented strategic challenge” and blocking the LDP’s desire to scrap a legal provision stating that the coast guard will not function as a “military” organization.

: After repeated intrusions by the China Coast Guard in waters around the Senkaku islands, the Japanese government announces it will increase the coast guard budget by 40% by fiscal 2027.

: Japanese government announces it will include a standoff missile unit for enemy counterstrikes in the country’s revised defense plans.

: Asahi editorializes against the expanded defense budget on grounds that piling on debt will not only worsen the nation’s fiscal health and allow unrestrained defense spending.

: Yomiuri Shimbun learns that a core unit for intelligence warfare to obstruct the command and control system of adversaries and counter the spread of disinformation is to be established in Japan’s Maritime Defense Force.

: LDP policy chief Hagiuda Koichi visits Taiwan, praising it as an extremely important partner and valued friend of Japan with whom Japan share fundamental values such as liberal democracy, basic human rights, and the rule of law as well as close economic relations and personal exchanges.

: At two-plus-two talks with visiting Australian defense and foreign ministers in Tokyo, the two countries pledge to enhance defense cooperation as China’s rapid military buildup in the Indo-Pacific has worsened the regional security environment.

: In light of increased pressure from China, the head of a conservative Japanese think tank advises that Japan should proactively conduct information warfare operations and enhance its military capabilities to gain both Taiwanese and American confidence. China’s breakthrough into Taiwan would be vitally dangerous for Japan.

: Draft of the National Security Strategy (NSS) presented to a working team of the LDP and Komeito describes China’s hegemonic moves as “the greatest strategic challenge” Japan faces.

: Chinese automaker BYD announces that it will start sales of its electric SUV in Japan at the end of January, priced significantly lower than Japanese EV manufacturers, particularly when subsidies are added to the sticker price. Japanese companies are not faring well in the EV car market.

: Kishida instructs defense and finance ministers to earmark 43 trillion yen for defense spending over the five years from fiscal 2023, more than 1.5 times the 27.47 trillion yen set under the current medium-term defense capability development program.

: Japan plans to more than quadruple cyber defense personnel while increasing overall staff dealing with cyber-attacks to 20,000 by fiscal 2027, say government sources.

: A joint public opinion poll finds that 44.5% of Japanese and 56.7% of Chinese believe that a military conflict in the Taiwan Strait is likely within a few years or in the future.

: Yonaguni, Japan’s westernmost island and the island closest to Taiwan, holds its first evacuation drill on 30 November to prepare for a ballistic missile strike.

: Citing unnamed government sources, Kyodo reports that Japan is considering expanding an Okinawa-based ground force unit to defend remote southwestern islands and prepare for a contingency involving Taiwan in the face of China’s increasing assertiveness.

: Yomiuri states that the Japanese government is considering development of at least 10 types of long-range missiles as it moves toward the possession of counterattack capabilities.

: In a major change from its long-held previous opposition to Japan’s possession of counterstrike capabilities, junior coalition partner Komeito agrees to broadly support them after confirming that the principle of using the minimum force necessary will be honored.

: Chancellor of the Prefectural University of Kumamoto Shiraishi Takashi outlines a four-point strategy for enhancing Japanese defense including integrating land, sea, and air military capabilities with cyberspace, electromagnetic waves, and outer space as well as the economy, science and technology, information, and other elements.

: Two Chinese H-6 bombers and two Russian Tu-95 bombers fly over the Sea of Japan, the East China Sea and the Pacific Ocean on Wednesday, prompting Air Self-Defense Force fighter jets to scramble in response. None of the four entered Japan’s territorial airspace.

: An Asahi editorial complains that the Nov. 28 announcement that the defense budget is to be increased was a done deal whose timing was wrong.

: Japanese government announces that a network of 50 small satellites working together in space will be developed for Japan’s defense. The first is expected to be launched as soon as fiscal 2024, in line with the possession of counterattack capabilities to strike enemy missile launch sites for the purpose of self-defense.

: Mai Yamada (山田摩衣), born to a Taiwanese mother and Japanese father, is elected one of nine city councilors in Banciao District (板橋) in Taiwan. She describes the support she received as proof of Taiwan-Japan friendship. She is speaks Japanese, English, and Hoklo (Taiwanese).

: As domestic demand for sake declines, Japanese brewers are rapidly increasing exports to China, which have grown about 50 times in the past 10 years. By contrast, demand in Japan has dwindled to less than 30% its peak nearly five decades ago.

: In the 26th intrusion into Japanese waters by Chinese government ships this year and the first since Nov. 12-13 four China Coast Guard ships sail in Japanese waters around the Senkaku Islands. One is believed to be equipped with a 76mm gun, the largest of its kind mounted on such intruding Chinese vessels.

: Annual China Security Report, published by the National Institute for Defense Studies, focuses on the cognitive warfare being adopted by the Chinese Communist Party.

: Japanese chip equipment supplier headed by a Shanghainese begins to reorganize supply chains and factories in a strategy designed to access both US and Chinese markets after Washington rolled out new chip export controls.

: In light of Japanese companies withdrawing from defense work due to low profit margins and small order volumes, Yomiuri advocates that the government increase subsidies to companies and establish a system that enhances the competitiveness of defense equipment abroad.

: Renmin Ribao describes China-Japan defense talks, held annually since 2012, as having gained momentum since Xi and Kishida met in Bangkok on Nov. 17 and that the two delegations agreed on further cooperation in six fields, including accelerating work on establishing a direct hotline between the defense authorities of the two nations.

: A Japan External Trade Organization (JETRO) survey shows that 41.9% of Japanese firms believe their operating profits in China in 2022 will fall from the previous year.

: Japan’s Advisory Panel to Comprehensively Discuss Defense Capabilities as National Strength presents its proposal to Prime Minister Kishida.

: Asahi complains that it took the Advisory Panel to Comprehensively Discuss Defense Capabilities as National Strength only four meetings over less than two months to reach its decision and demands that intensive deliberations, including opposition parties, on the panel’s report be conducted in the Diet,

: Stressing that it is essential for Japan to possess counterstrike capabilities, the panel on revising Japan’s strategy believes the public should shoulder the expense through “a wide range of taxes.”

: Yomiuri describes Kishida as proud that he followed through on his publicly declared plan to “say what needs to be said” to Xi Jinping on matters such as Taiwan, the Diaoyu/Senkaku Islands, and the demarcations between the two countries’ territorial waters.

: Xinhua reports that Xi and Kishida reached a 5-point consensus on stabilizing and developing bilateral relations, stressing that their countries should “be partners, not threats.”

: The 5th meeting of the LDP-Komeito working team on national security, includes discussion on further improving the evacuation system for residents on remote islands and of the J-Alert early warning system that transmits emergency information nationwide.

: Japan’s Defense Ministry announces plans to develop hypersonic missiles with a range of 3,000 km, allowing them to fly from Hokkaido to the Nansei Islands to help hold off foreign troops landing on those islands, with the aim to deploy them in the first half of the 2030s.

: Japan announces plans to deploy a network of 50 compact satellites in a low Earth orbit to track next-generation hypersonic missiles capable of evading defense systems.

: Speaking at the ASEAN+3 meeting in Phnom Penh, PM Kishida tells Asian leaders that China is continuously and increasingly taking actions that infringe on Japan’s sovereignty and escalate tensions in the region, adding that peace and stability in the Taiwan Strait is important for regional security and voicing “serious concern” over the human rights situation of the Uyghur people.

: Chinese Foreign Ministry terms Kishida’s statement on Chinese actions absurd, since China has never violated Japan’s sovereignty in the East China Sea. Continuing with its anti-China strategy may result in “severe damage in almost all spheres, be they the economy or the military.”

: Jiji reports poll showing that although 79% of Japanese feel a sense of crisis about the situation in Taiwan, 74% are opposed or relatively opposed to the SDF joining with the US military to fight the Chinese military, with 22% indicating approval or relative approval.

: Newly founded Rapidus semiconductor firm announces plans to develop 2-nanometer semiconductors, for which the production technology has not yet been established.

: During a brief exchange between Premier Li Keqiang and PM Kishida at the ASEAN + 3 meeting Li refers to the importance of Sino-Japanese relations while Kishida says he hope the two can strive toward building a constructive and stable relationship.

: Eight major Japanese firms begin forming Rapidus, a new company to produce next-generation semiconductors in Japan, aiming to establish the manufacturing technology for the sake of Japan’s economic security toward the latter half of the 2020s.

: As part of an effort to strengthen inter-service cooperation, the MSDF and coast guard are to conduct a joint drill simulating an armed attack on the Senkaku Islands.

: SDFs will for the first time dispatch a Type-16 mobile combat vehicle (MCV) to Yonaguni, the island in closest proximity to Taiwan.

: Construction is to begin in April on portable harbors to defend the Sakishima and Nansei islands against invasion. The Sakishimas, part of the Nansei group closest to Taiwan, currently has just two ports able to accommodate SDF transport vessels.

: Eight-day Malabar joint exercise, aimed at strengthening cooperation among Australia, India, Japan, and the US in light of China’s increasingly aggressive maritime expansion, begins.

: A lantern festival at Japan’s Manpukuji temple, founded by a Chinese monk in the 17th century, commemorates the 350th anniversary of his death and the 50th anniversary of the establishment of Sino-Japanese relations. Visitors pass through what the temple calls a gate of friendship and enter grounds that are illuminated by 30 lanterns sent by Chinese craftsmen.

: Speaking at a 12-nation international fleet review at Sagami Bay, PM Kishida reiterates need to enhance the country’s military capabilities, specifying the need for more warships, strengthening anti-missile defense, and improving the working conditions of troops.

: Leading Japanese furniture retailer Nitori opens its first stores in Beijing, hoping to increase the total of Chinese outlets from 59 to 100 by the end of 2023.

: Japan’s government will earmark ¥1.358 trillion in its second extra budget of fiscal 2022 to strengthen supply chains of products such as semiconductors, cloud computing devices, batteries, and rare earth elements considered highly important for economic security.

: Responding to reports that the US has instructed Japan to limit exports of semiconductor technology to China, China Daily warns that “dancing with the wolf is not going to help you, dear Japan.”

: Japan’s Defense Ministry is considering deployment of hypersonic missiles by 2030, envisioning it as the third and final stage of a process preceded by the acquisition of Tomahawk and other cruise missiles from the US and then extending the range of the indigenous Type 12 surface-to-ship missile from the current 200 km to over 1000 km.

: Reacting to reports that the AUKUS members, and the US in particular favor inviting Japan to join a JAUKUS, Global Times warns Tokyo that doing so will create more strategic instability for the whole Asia-Pacific region.

: Reports say Japan’s defense ministry aims to put into operation two surveillance satellites and is reportedly also considering adding a function to the second satellite to interfere with the activities of Chinese and Russian killer satellites in orbit.

: To counter China’s dominance in rare earth minerals, the Japanese government will deploy technology to extract elements from 6,000 meters under the sea near the Ogasawara Islands. It wants private companies to enter the market from fiscal 2028.

: Japan moves to set up a new joint command and a new commanding officer position to oversee its SDF units and better coordinate with the US military in emergencies.

: Responding to reports that the Japanese government intends to purchase US Tomahawk missiles as a stopgap before indigenously-produced missiles become available, Asahi argues that the government has gotten ahead of itself by seeking to acquire a weapons system primarily used for a capability whose legality has not yet been formally approved.

: Eiji Suzuki, former head of the Japan-China Youth Exchange Association who had been imprisoned in China for six years on spying charges, returns to Japan and calls China a dangerous country.

: Following a standoff between Japanese coast guard vessels and a Taiwanese research vessel, a Chinese foreign ministry spokesperson rejects Japan’s claim to an exclusive economic zone in the waters off Taiwan.

: Toyota announces the launch of a small electric sedan called the bZ3, to be powered by Chinese company BYD’s less bulky Blade batteries.

: As the Chinese Communist Party’s 20th Party Congress closed, Japan and Australia issue a joint declaration calling for a “favorable strategic balance that deters aggression and behavior that undermines international rules and norms. Yomiuri comments that the two have “stepped up their military cooperation in light of developments related to China and other security issues” and demonstrated a quasi-alliance between them.

: LDP and Komeito are reportedly split over the definition of counterattack capabilities, with the major difference being interpreting the concept of “beginning an attack.”

: Nikkei, commenting on US congressional concerns that Chinese ownership of IS farmlands was posing a threat to food security and national security, points out that LDP Diet member Sanae Takaichi had raised the same issue with regard to a company with close ties to Chinese money that acquired a parcel of land in Hokkaido roughly 35 km from an ASDF unit.

: Asahi observes that a number of Japanese scholars are opting to do research in China because Japan’s funding system pushes young researchers away, resulting in a brain drain.

: Global Times expresses concern that revision of Japan’s national security strategy being discussed, will make China, which has no intention of being hostile to Japan, an imaginary enemy.

: Speaking in Taiwanese at the inauguration of the Taiwan Parliamentary All-Out Defense Committee, deputy director of Japan’s de facto embassy in Taipei, the Japan-Taiwan Exchange Association, Yokochi Akira receives a standing ovation when he reiterates former Prime Minister Abe’s remark that “a Taiwan emergency is a Japanese emergency.”

: Prime Minister Kishida says he will carry out an extensive review of Japan’s defense capabilities in light of “an increasingly tough security environment in East Asia.”

: Commenting on Japanese plans to create a cyberdefense framework, China’s leading military newspaper says that cyberspace should not be the new domain for Japan to repeat military expansion and part of its plan to secretly revise the constitution and expand its military forces.

: Japan and Canada agree to formally start talks toward signing a military intelligence information sharing accord as their foreign ministers adopt an action plan to strengthen cooperation on defense, economic security, and other areas amid growing threats from China and Russia.

: A delegation of Japanese lawmakers visits Wuchihshan Military Cemetery (五指山軍人公墓) in New Taipei City to pay tribute to former President Lee Teng-hui (李登輝), praising his contributions to democracy and to Taiwan-Japan relations.

: Japan’s Sumitomo Corporation signs partnership agreement with an Indonesian partner of PowerChina to jointly develop a hydroelectric power station estimated to cost $17.8 billion on the island of Borneo.

: Yomiuri publishes details of China’s disinformation efforts aimed at influencing views of Taiwan, that have included distributing false images of military confrontations.

: Japan’s Defense Ministry reports that a Chinese navy Dongdiao class intelligence-gathering ship passed through the Tsushima Strait and then entered the East China Sea, but did not intrude into Japan’s territorial waters.

: Senior fellow of the China division of Japan’s National Institute for Defense Studies warns against underestimating China’s ability to wage cognitive warfare, which he characterizes as a mixture of truth and falsehood that makes it difficult to make accurate judgments.

: Japanese government official states that North Korea’s launch of a ballistic missile that flew over Japan underscores the need to strengthen Japan’s defense capabilities.

: Nationwide poll by Yomiuri reveals that 71% of respondents are in favor of Japan strengthening its defense capabilities, far more than the 21% who were opposed to any measures.

: Yomiuri editorializes against the exodus of Japanese companies from defense production, citing the risk of relying on others.

: China-friendly South China Morning Post cites analysts who characterize Japanese aid to Africa as favoring quality, in contrast to Chinese aid that concentrates on quantity.

: First meeting of an expert panel to comprehensively discuss Japan’s national defense capabilities, including how to equip the SDF, the size of the budget, financial resources and other issues, is held at the prime minister’s office.

: Ceremony commemorating the 50th anniversary of Sino-Japanese diplomatic ties is described as lacking a celebratory mood.

: Number of Japanese companies operating in China declines to 12,706 in June 2022 from 14,394 in 20212, according to Japanese credit research company Teikoku Databank Ltd, attributing the drop to rising labor costs that prompted companies to move to Southeast Asia and other regions.

: Indicating the current chill in Sino-Japanese relations, commemorative ceremonies marking the 50thanniversary of normalization are organized by private organizations in Tokyo, but no official government-to-government events are scheduled.

: Three German fighter jets conduct exercises with Japan’s ASDF.

: Japan Coast Guard says that three Chinese coast guard vessels enter Japan’s territorial waters near the Senkaku Islands and stay for more than eight hours, a day before the 50th anniversary of the normalization of the countries’ diplomatic ties.

: Japanese Defense Ministry reveals that three Chinese ships, including a Renhai-class missile destroyer, sailed about 300 km south-southeast of the southernmost point of land on Honshu on the 26th.

: Toyota-based Chinese autonomous vehicle company Pony.ai will collaborate with Chinese state-owned and largest automaker SAIC to produce a fully driverless robotaxi.

: Chinese media report that the PRC air force now has its first dedicated drone squadron, a seed unit currently stationed in northwest China.

: //www.japantimes.co.jp/news/2022/09/24/national/politics-diplomacy/china-japan-envoys-no-meeting/">reports that due to “scheduling conflicts,” he is unable to meet Chinese counterpart Wang Yi during the the opening of the UNGA in New York.

: Wan Gang, vice-chairperson of the National Committee of the Chinese People’s Political Consultative Conference, announced as China’s representative to Abe’s funeral.

: First formal meeting of the Blue Pacific Partners (BPP) is held in New York with members Japan, Australia, Britain, and New Zealand joined by Canada and Germany who announce their intention to join.

: Chinese Premier Li Keqiang holds high-level video dialogue with representatives of the Japanese business community including executive members of Nippon Keidanren (Japan Business Federation), Japan-China Economic Association and the Japan-China Investment Promotion Organization.

: “Japan’s Vision for the Indo-Pacific,” an ad in newspapers such as The Wall Street Journal, invites readers to click to “discover more” which directs them to a lengthy article on Japan’s efforts to create business partnerships along the lines of PM Kishida’s aim to create a new form of capitalism focused on sustainability and accelerating growth through human capital.

: “Envisioning a Future Together,” a paid article in Nikkei, features CEO Kashitani Ichiro describing Toyota Tsusho’s 100 years in Africa, where it employs 2,000 people and operates in mobility, health care, consumer goods, power, infrastructure, and technology.

: Referencing the meeting of Kishida with British Prime Minister Liz Truss at the opening of the UN General Assembly, Global Times accuses the UK of hoping to regain its lost glory of the empire on which the sun never set, and that Japan has similar ambitions.

: Japanese government sources disclose that representatives of France, Germany, and South Korea will attend the meeting of the Partners in the Blue Pacific founded to counter China’s expansionism in the area.

: Daikin Industries, one of the world’s leading manufacturers of air conditioners, announces plans to create a supply chain that excludes China.

: Writing in the official Renmin Ribao, “Zhong Sheng” (Voice of the Center, a pseudonym for a high-ranking figure) urges that Japan destroy chemical weapons it abandoned in China after World War II.

: China reacts to news of a face-to-face meeting between Biden and Kishida by describing it as a plan to make Japan a stronger pawn to thwart China’s “re”-unification, also raising the specter of reviving Japanese militarism.

: Taiwan’s Hongmaogang Bao’an temple will unveil a full-size statue of former Prime Minister Abe ahead of his state funeral on the 27th.

: At the opening of the two-day Taiwan Plus cultural festival in Tokyo, Gov. Yuriko Koike sends regards to Taiwan President Tsai Ing-wen and her hope for closer Tokyo-Taiwan ties.

: Notwithstanding the warm words about friendship that marked the Sept. 17 gala, events throughout China mark the 91st anniversary of the Shenyang Incident of 1931 that the PRC government regards as the beginning of the second Sino-Japanese War.

: A gala themed “neighbors across a narrow strip of water co-creating the future” hosted by the Union of Chinese Residing in Japan, features representation of what Xinhua calls warm moments in exchanges between China and Japan through dances, songs, and instrumental music performances.

: A Chinese survey vessel enters Japan’s territorial waters near Kagoshima in the seventh such intrusion since July.

: Japan joins Taiwan and South Korea in a US-led “Chip 4” Alliance as a bulwark against China’s semiconductor industry.

: US Secretary of defense Lloyd Austin and Japanese counterpart Hamada Yasukazu strongly condemn China’s military exercises near Taiwan and its firing of ballistic missiles that landed in Japan’s Exclusive Economic Zone.

: Taiwan designates two former legislative chiefs, Su Jia-chyuan, currently head of the Taiwan-Japan Relations Association, and former speaker of the Legislative Yuan Wang Jin-pyng, to attend former Prime Minister Abe’s funeral

: Two Chinese Luyang II missile destroyers sail between the main island of Okinawa and Miyakojima without entering Japanese territorial waters.

: To strengthen defense of the remote islands, mainly the Nanseis, the SDF will receive Israeli Harop and US Switchblade drones on a trial basis beginning in FY2023.

: Recognizing the vulnerability of Japan’s cyberdefenses, the government explores introduction of an active cyber defense network (ACD) that would continuously monitor cyberspace and respond quickly to suspicious communications and behavior.

: Following Russian-Chinese military drills off the Sea of Japan earlier in September, the MSDF and Indian navies conduct exercises in the strategically important Bay of Bengal. The helicopter carrier Izumo and destroyer Takanami were joined by Indian destroyer Ranvijay and frigate Sahyadri.

: Nippon.com carries lengthy article detailing the achievements of Japanese ODA to China while noting that Beijing’s reticence to inform the Chinese public about Japanese contributions has limited its ability to create mutual understanding.

: In a video message to a symposium on the run-up to 50th anniversary of normalization organized by the Chinese embassy and major business organization Keidanren, Foreign Minister Wang Yi calls on the Japanese government to exercise caution on Taiwan and avoid incentivizing advocates of Taiwanese independence. Xinhua reports that Wang Yi said that good-neighborliness and friendship, and the development and revitalization of Asia are the destinies, aspirations, and responsibilities of China and Japan.

: Nikkei envisions an era of cold peace for Sino-Japanese relations in which the two try to coexist peacefully while dealing with simmering tensions and potential confrontation.

: Responding to mutual anxieties about Chinese activities, Japanese and Indian foreign and defense ministers meet for their second two-plus-two dialogue.

: Four Chinese Coast Guard Haijing-class vessels sail into Japanese-claimed territorial waters around the Diaoyu/Senkaku Islands on Sept. 8, staying for about 90 minutes. This is the first such intrusion since August 25 and the 20th of this year.

: Citigroup reports that central banks of China and Japan seek to stem the slide in their currencies that have hurt not only their economies but those of Asian currencies, since they are increasingly tied to the yen and the yuan, with the latter having stronger influence since 2009.

: On the 10th anniversary of Tokyo placing most of the disputed Diaoyu/ Senkaku Islands under government control, Chief Cabinet Secretary Matsuno expresses “extreme concern” over Chinese activities in the area.

: High energy prices, inflation, anti-virus lockdowns, and problems in the property market combine to depress Chinese economic growth in August. Worrisomely for Japan, whose economy is heavily dependent on Chinese purchases, Chinese non-energy imports also declined.

: Asahi editorializes that revisions to Japan’s national security strategy which could radically change the nation’s defense-only policy must be done with transparency and respect for dissenting views.

: Professor at the Central Committee’s Party School acknowledges current difficulties in China’s international situation and placed the onus of improvement on China.

: Yomiuri poll reports that 81% of respondents view China as a threat; 15% do not.

: Reports say that, with China in mind, Japan will revise its Overseas Development Assistance (ODA) program for the first time since 2015, stating that unilateral attempts to change the status quo will not be tolerated.

: Chief Cabinet Secretary Matsuno Hirokazu expresses serious concern about six Russian and Chinese warships firing machine guns into the Sea of Japan during joint maneuvers off Hokkaido.

: Defense Minister Hamada Yasukazu says that more fuel and ammunition storage facilities will be stored on the Nansei Islands.

: Global Times praises the introduction of Japanese dramas into China over the past several decades as enabling Chinese to better understand “their close neighbors across the sea.”

: Global Times states that unless Japan is willing to resolve key points of friction in its China policy, nothing can be accomplished.

: Lu Chao, research fellow at the Liaoning Institute of Social Sciences, tells Global Times that Japan remains a factor of uncertainty and a disturber of regional peace and security.

: LTG Stephen Rudder, commander of US Marines in the Indo-Pacific region, says that US and Japanese possession of long-range missiles are key to deterring China, and urges a wider US-Japanese intelligence gathering network.

: Yomiuri editorial urges China to rectify its behavior based on violations cited in the report of the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights.

: Japanese Foreign Minister Hayashi states his willingness to meet Chinese counterpart Wang Yi on the sidelines of the UN General Assembly’s opening meeting, while stressing that nothing has been decided.

: Japan’s Defense Ministry reportedly plans to submit a $7.1 billion request for a sea-based Aegis system to be installed on a new, larger destroyer that would be the size of an aircraft carrier.

: An article in right-of-center Japan Forward accuses Chinese behavior of replicating that of militaristic Imperial Japan.

: Reports say Japan’s Defense <inistry plans to reinforce missile and electronic warfare units stationed on the Nansei Islands near Taiwan.

: In light of Japan’s deteriorating national security environment, the defense ministry requests a 3.6% increase for fiscal 2023, just below last year’s record-setting amount.

: Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesperson Wang Wenbin describes Japanese concern with a “China threat” as an excuse for military expansion.

: Bloomberg reports that Japan will develop and mass produce a cruise missile and a high-velocity ballistic missile as it seeks the ability to strike more distant targets.

: Global Times mourns the death of business management expert Kazuo Inamori for his contributions to development of bilateral trade and Sino-Japanese friendship.

: Chinese ambassador to Tokyo Kong Xuanyou urges prudence on Japan’s part, warning that bilateral relations are at a new crossroads and face a fresh round of conflicts.

: Mindful of China’s growing influence over Sri Lanka, Japan, its second-largest creditor, seeks to organize a conference to resolve Sri Lanka’s debt crisis.

: Global Times criticizes Japan for its failure to acknowledge forced labor abuses during World War II.

: According to Nikkei, Sino-Japanese financial cooperation may have hit its high water mark 10 years ago, with a proposed agreement on cross-ownership of each other’s bonds having fallen into abeyance.

: Asahi reports that more Japanese companies, concerned with COVID-induced supply chain disruptions, higher wages in China, and issues of quality control, are moving facilities back to Japan or, in some cases, to Vietnam.

: PM Kishida, speaking at the triennial Tokyo International Conference on African Development, pledges $30 billion in investments in human resources, mainly in the agricultural and health sectors

: Jiji reports meeting between Taiwan President Tsai Ing-wen and a supra-partisan group of Diet members who favor stronger Taipei-Tokyo relations. Delegation head Keiji Furuya terms Chinese intimidation of Taiwan “absolutely unacceptable.”

: After a nearly two and a half year ban, China will allow foreign nationals, including Japanese, to apply for visas to study in the PRC.

: In what appears to be an attempt to soften relations ahead of the September commemoration of the 50th anniversary of mutual diplomatic recognition, an article in China Daily describes the 30-year friendship between the Tsukamoto family of Osaka and Xi Jinping.

: To stem the exodus of domestic firms from defense-related production, Japan’s Defense Ministry will seek a special budget to dissuade them from doing so.

: Japan’s Defense Ministry announces plans to equip MSDF vessels engaged in long-term voyages with the system offered by SpaceX to boost telecommunications capabilities and resolve the issue of manpower shortages in the MSDF.

: Mindful of Chinese and Russian advances in hypersonic missile technology, Japan’s budget requests for fiscal 2023 will include funds to strengthen Japan’s capability for detection and interception.

: With a Taiwan contingency in mind and mindful of the missile gap with China, the Japanese government announces plans to station more than 1,000 long-range missiles, most of them from Kyoto to the Nansei Island chain.

: Chinese military experts respond that there is no connection between Tokyo’s decision to deploy more and longer-range missiles and Chinese actions; the true motivation is to revise Japan’s pacifist constitution and enhance its military power.

: Chinese state councilor Yang Jiechi and head of Japan’s national security secretariat Akiba hold talks on the security implications of China’s recent activities in areas surrounding Taiwan
Aug. 19, 2022: In a telephone conversation with Solomon Islands Foreign Minister Jeremiah Manele, FM Hayashi expresses Tokyo’s concerns about the security pact that the Solomons concluded with China in April.

: On the eve of the anniversary of Japan’s surrender after World War II, Zhong Sheng “Voice of the Central [Party]” a pseudonym for a highly authoritative entity, issues a litany of complaints against Japan including its most recent criticisms of China’s legitimate countermeasures in the Taiwan Strait.

: Nikkei reports a rise in anti-Japanese sentiments in China, resulting in the cancellation of events and removal of paintings that public opinion regard as “too Japanese.”

: Four Chinese Coast Guard vessels enter Japanese territorial waters near the disputed Diaoyu/Senkaku Islands.

: Reacting to Nishimura’s visit and the 77th anniversary of Japan’s surrender after World War II, Global Times observes that more countries are becoming concerned that Japan may return to militarism. It does not mention any specific countries.

: About 150 children and parents attend the showing of a dinosaur-themed film at the Japanese embassy in Beijing, with a paleontologist explaining that Japan and China were contiguous at the time the dinosaurs lived.

: In the 17th such intrusion so far this year, two Chinese Coast Guard ships enter Japanese waters around the Senkaku/Diaoyu Islands.

: China’s Foreign Ministry issued stern representations to Japan over its ministers’ behavior in visiting the Yasukuni Shrine.

: Economics Minister Nishimura Yasutoshi visits Yasukuni Shrine, the first member of Kishida’s Cabinet to do so.

: Japanese logistics company SBS Holdings calculates that buying electric vans assembled in China will lower its operating costs by 30% over gasoline-powered vehicles.

: Huang Xingyuan, representative director of the Japan-China Friendship Center, advises Japan to rectify its mindset of relying on China for its economy and the US for security and to drop its emphasis on the US-Japan alliance.

: Newly appointed Defense Minister Hamada Yasukaza expresses concern about China’s military exercises near Taiwan and pledges to increase the defense of Japan’s southwestern islands.

: In response to Japan signing a G7 letter of protest against Chinese actions against Taiwan, Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi cancels meeting with counterpart Hayashi that was to be held on the sidelines of the ASEAN meeting.

: Japan’s government protests after five Chinese missiles shot in retaliation against Taiwan hosting US Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi land in Japan’s EEZ.

: Speaking at CSIS, Foreign Minister Hayashi emphasizes China’s behavior in the Indo-Pacific, saying the “logic of brute force” was gaining traction over the rule of law.

: Global Times denounces the cross-party visit of Japanese lawmakers to Taiwan as nonsensical actions by politicians seeking Instagram-worthy publicity.

: Stating that Japan must be able to deal with the drastically changing security environment, LDP Secretary-General Toshimitsu Motegi urges that defense spending increase from 5.4 trillion yen in fiscal year 2022 to the mid-6 trillion range in 2023.

: At least seven Chinese cities cancel annual Japan-themed Matsuri festivals after some incidents, including a woman who enshrined Japanese war criminals at a Nanjing temple and, separately, unspecified comments by others that were made during the public debate over former Japanese prime minister Abe.

: Xinhua responds to the white paper by describing it as showing a total disregard for facts and full of bias.

: Defense of Japan 2022 takes note of China’s ramping up civil-military fusion, its “relentlessly continuing unilateral attempts to change the status quo by coercion near the Senkaku Islands, and the creation of faits accomplis in the South China Sea” and highlights the need for deterrence.

: A Chinese navy ship sails through Japanese territorial waters, the sixth such intrusion of the year and the first since April.

: Draft basic guidelines indicate that Japan is to invest heavily in high-tech areas that involve the nation’s security.

: Taiwan’s China-leaning opposition party the KMT’s decision to lower the flag at its Taipei headquarters to half-staff in honor of former PM Abe draws criticism from the party’s more assertively pro-China faction.

: US satellite operator Planet Labs releases photographs from base in Xinjiang showing a mockup of a Japanese SDF aircraft destroyed, apparently from a missile.

: China’s foreign ministry lodges “stern representations” with the Japanese government over Taiwanese vice-president William Lai’s attending Abe’s funeral.

: Taiwan Vice President William Lai becomes the most senior official to visit Japan since Tokyo broke relations in 1972 to recognize the PRC.

: According to a Japan expert at the Chinese Academy of Social Sciences, Japan saw in the NATO summit an opportunity to join with the US and some European countries to encircle China, possibly intervene militarily in the Taiwan question, and consolidate the Japan-US alliance thus increasing US military presence in the region.

: Global Times describes late former Prime Minister Abe as a controversial figure who ruined his contribution to bilateral ties by visiting the Yasukuni Shrine, “denying” Japan’s invasion history, and declaring that a Taiwan emergency is a Japanese emergency.

: Japanese government lodges a diplomatic protest after two Chinese Coast Guard ships stayed continuously in the territorial waters around the disputed Diaoyu/Senkaku Islands for 64 hours and 17 minutes from July 5-7, the longest single intrusion since 2012.

: Japanese defense ministry official expresses “serious concern” about the numbers of Chinese and Russian warships circumnavigating Japan, with speculation centering on their checking SDF surveillance capabilities and tracking systems, with information being shared between the two countries.

: Veteran Japanese political analyst Yoichi Funabashi argues that Japan and China look as if they are being pulled back to the starting point of normalization 50 years ago, with both lacking domestic support for better relations.

: Japanese government lodges protest to Beijing through diplomatic channels about the passage of a Chinese frigate through the contiguous zone around the disputed Diaoyu/Senkaku Islands, the fourth such instance since June 2018.

: Aiming to bolster Japan’s ability to defend the Nansei Islands from Chinese expansionist activities, the defense ministry contracts for the delivery of 12 next-generation offshore patrol vessels (OPVs) from fiscal year 2023.

: At G7 press conference, Kishida says he wants to hold summit talks with Xi Jinping; although there are no plans for a summit, it’s important to keep dialogue at various levels.

: In response to Kishida’s efforts to broaden NATO’s concerns to the Indo-Pacific, Global Times cites Mencius saying that a gentleman [NATO] should not stand under a dangerous wall, and that the sewage of the Cold War should not be allowed to flow into the Pacific Ocean.

: Speaking at the G7 summit in Germany, Kishida takes the unusual step of criticizing China by name, saying “The G7 countries need to present measures to deal with China’s unfair and opaque financing for development projects.”

: Global Times reports first successful voyage of the “golden channel” Qingdao-Osaka fast logistics route since the RCEP trade agreement came into effect on January 1.

: Japan Coast Guard confirms that two China Coast Guard vessels intruded into Japanese territorial waters off the Diaoyu/Senkaku Islands and stayed for 64 hours, repeatedly attempting to approach a Japanese fishing boat.

: Citing the launch of the PRC’s third aircraft carrier and the joint Chinese-Russian circumvention of Japan’s home islands, Asahi, normally accommodative to Chinese government positions, editorializes that China’s “reckless military buildup is needlessly stoking tensions.”

: Chinese luxury market analyst Jing Daily attributes Japanese fast fashion behemoth Uniqlo’s exceptional success despite the pandemic partly to its refusal to comment on political matters such as sourcing of cotton from Xinjiang, which has hurt several of its rivals.

: Having confirmed Chinese construction work suspected to be for gas field exploration in contested waters, the Japanese government lodges a protest over this and repeated intrusions by Japanese ships into waters around the contested Diaoyu/Senkaku Islands.

: Japan’s defense ministry reports that two Chinese navy vessels, one of which is a destroyer, are spotted navigating through the Tsugaru Strait toward the Pacific with seven Russian navy vessels, including a destroyer and an intelligence-gathering ship, and may be conducting joint training exercises when the Chinese vessels are deployed in the Pacific.

: On the sidelines of the SLD and marking the first meeting between Chinese and Japanese defense ministers since 2019, Kishi raises “serious concerns” over the continuation of joint Sino-Russian military exercises around Japan to counterpart Wei Fenghe.

: Speaking at the SLD, Japanese DM Kishi says that joint military operations by Russia and China are upending international norms and that Japan is on the front lines of the increased tensions.

: Responding to Kishida’s speech, former vice-president of the PLA’s Academy of Military Science states “on the so-called issue of unilateral attempts to change the status quo by force in the East China Sea, it was Japan who firstly and illegally ‘nationalize’ [sic] the Diaoyu Islands and other relevant island [sic] around the region.”

: Head of Yomiuri’s international news department argues that, faced with China’s militaristic rise and North Korea’s missile development, the Japanese public has given up its utopian dream and now supports strong defense spending.

: In a keynote speech to the Shangri-La Dialogue (SLD), Kishida says that Ukraine could be tomorrow’s East Asia, chiding China for not complying with the UN Convention on the Law of the Sea and stating that unilateral attempts to change the status quo by force in violation of international law are continuing.

: Elaborating on the Yang-Akiba telephone call, Global Times asserts that “Japan needs a head blow to wake up.”

: In a telephone conversation with Japanese national security chief Akiba Takeo, his Chinese counterpart Yang Jiechi states that old problems in bilateral relations are intertwined with new ones and that challenges cannot be ignored.

: Japan’s defense ministry is studying the war in Ukraine to prepare a response to an invasion by an unnamed power and decide what equipment and what an enhanced budget should focus on.

: Jiji describes mood ahead of the 50th anniversary of the normalization of China-Japanese relations as far from festive, as persistent tensions mean it will be difficult to hold large-scale government-sponsored events, leaving the private sector to play the major role.

: Japanese government establishes 30-member team to designate by year’s end the use of land plots viewed as important for national security, such as remote islands and areas near Self-Defense Forces bases.

: Japan’s Foreign Ministry protests presence of Chinese ships apparently releasing observation equipment in Japan’s EEZ about 73 km north of Ishigaki Island.

: In response to strong concerns from the LDP, Japan’s government revises a draft document with a timeline of five years for comprehensive strengthening of Japan’s defense.

: Nikkei assesses that Japan’s economic strength in Southeast Asia has declined relative to that of China, which does three times more trade with ASEAN countries even though Japan leads in accumulated investment.

: Japan announces plans to develop drones to support fighter aircraft, and is considering equipping drones with missiles that would intercept enemy-launched missiles. To be developed with the US to ensure interoperability, the drones will be equipped with artificial intelligence.

: Chinese media describe reports that Izumo will participate in RIMPAC exercise and Indo-Pacific Deployment as further examples of Japan’s violation of its pacifist constitution.

: Japan’s Defense Ministry announces that its de facto aircraft carrier Izumo will make 12 ports of call that include four South Pacific states as well as fellow Quad members.

: Japanese companies are cautiously resuming operations in Shanghai, though concerned about another extended lockdown and pessimism over how soon the Chinese economy will recover.

: Japan’s foreign ministry creates internal strategy group tasked with monitoring Chinese activities.

: Nikkei opinion poll finds the approval rating for Kishida’s Cabinet reached the highest level since it was sworn in after Kishida and Biden affirmed the need to strengthen deterrence “with China in mind.”

: Komeito representative states that Japan should discuss possessing the ability to strike enemy bases that are preparing an attack.

: Chinese military source reportedly tells Yomiuri that drills by aircraft carrier Liaoning off Japan from 3-20 May near Okinawa were to establish the capability for around-the-clock attacks on Taiwan.

: Global Times editorializes that the Quad is an insidious effort to contain China.

: Prime Minister Kishida and President Biden confirm their commitment to oppose China’s and Russia’s expanding military activities in East Asia.

: DM Kishi describes Beijing and Moscow’s sending warplanes near Japan’s airspace during the meeting of the Quad “provocative,” with China responding that they were part of an annual military exercise.

: Quad members Australia, India, Japan, and the US announce a satellite-based plan to help Indo-Pacific countries track illegal fishing and unconventional maritime militias.

: Reuters reports that Japan is asking its universities for greater scrutiny of foreign students and scholars to prevent technology leaks to places like China.

: A Japanese academic urges caution on Taiwanese lobbies in Japan who call for a version of the Taiwan Relations Act, which he worries will give China a pretext for aggression.

: Satellite photos indicating a dummy Japanese E-767 surveillance aircraft that could be used for training to attack with missiles are detected in the Xinjiang desert.

: In a videoconference with Chinese counterpart Wang Yi, FM Hayashi states that Japanese public opinion is very critical of China, and expresses deep concern about Chinese activity in the East China and South China seas, Hong Kong, in Xinjiang, and in the Taiwan Strait. Xinhua omits Hayashi’s words.

: Former Pentagon official Elbridge Colby terms the Kishida administration’s plan to move toward spending 2% of GDP on defense as too late to meet the threat.

: Yomiuri reports Japanese and UK governments are coordinating in development of a successor to the ASDF’s F-2 fighter jet, with Lockheed Martin to participate in a limited role.

: Yomiuri reports that China will soon unveil its third aircraft carrier which, despite rumors to the contrary, may not be equipped with an electromagnetic catapult system since the required amount of electricity is not currently available.

: Spurred by concerns over China and Russia, Japan passes a law strengthening supply chains to procure semiconductors and other vital products and facilitate development of artificial intelligence and other cutting edge technologies through public-private partnerships.

: Responding to an LDP party member’s criticism of Chinese air force planes entering Taiwan’s air defense identification zone, a Chinese foreign ministry spokesperson states that “there is no reason for Japanese individuals to force themselves into the spotlight.”

: China’s leading military newspaper describes Prime Minister Kishida’s visit to Asian and European countries from April 29 to May 6 through the guise of a free and open Indo-Pacific as having strategic intentions of gathering support for the revision of Japan’s constitution.

: Foreign Minister Hayashi visits Fiji and Palau to discuss concerns over Chinese expansionism in the South Pacific in the wake of Beijing’s security agreement with the Solomon Islands.

: US Secretary of Defense Lloyd Austin, meeting with Japanese counterpart Kishi Nobuo, reiterates the US commitment to defend the contested Diaoyu/Senkaku Islands.

: Japan protests the presence of a Chinese ship in its territorial waters.

: At a seminar hosted by the Japan-China Investment Promotion Organization to mark the 50th anniversary of the normalization of Sino-Japanese relations, the Chinese ambassador to Tokyo describes relations as at a crossroads, listing three main areas where Japan needed to improve, and points out that Sino-Japanese trade volume is about the same as that with the US and EU combined.

: Professor at Japan’s Chuo University warns that Japan’s support for the US position on Ukraine could backfire against its economy. 

: Asahi editorializes against the proposal to allow a counterattack capability on grounds that it could endanger Japan’s security should a mistake be made in judging an enemy’s intentions. 

: Commander of the US 7th Fleet Vice Adm. Karl Thomas, speaking to US Ambassador to Japan Rahm Emanuel and Foreign Minister Hayashi aboard the aircraft carrier Abraham Lincoln, links Russian aggression in Ukraine with Chinese expansion in the Pacific region. 

: A multiparty group of 103 Diet members including ministers visit the Yasukuni Shrine on its spring festival, resuming a practice interrupted by the pandemic. 

: In response to the publication of the Japanese Foreign Ministry’s Diplomatic Blue Book, Da Zhigang of the Heilongjiang Provincial Academy of Social Sciences opines that the reason Japan had not reacted as strongly against China as against Russia was not only because of the upcoming 50th anniversary of normalization but because there “would be no diplomatic wiggle room for Japan if it defines both of its nuclear-armed neighbors as enemies at the same time.” 

: Granted a waiver from Taiwan’s inbound visa quarantine requirement, an 11-person delegation from the LDP’s youth division is to visit Taiwan May 3-7 to pay respects at former President Lee Teng-hui’s grave and meet high-ranking Taiwan officials.

: In an address to the Japan Forum for Strategic Studies, Abe warns that Japan will become a laughing stock if it doesn’t raise its defense budget in line with NATO countries’ 2% of GDP. 

: Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern of New Zealand and Kishida begin talks on a “seamless” sharing of classified information; The New York Times interprets this as a move toward including Japan in the Five Eyes intelligence sharing partnership. 

: LDP Research Commission on Security recommends use of the term “counterattack capability” to allow the SDF to strike an enemy base should it be believed to be preparing for a missile attack against Japan. 

: Global Times reports that a well-known Japanese lawyer has organized a grassroots “emergency rally” to persuade his government to return Chinese relics stolen during World War II. 

: China has an unusually low-key reaction to Kishida’s offering to the Yasukuni Shrine. 

: Reacting to a sharp slowdown in exports to China, rising energy prices, and the conflict in Ukraine, Japan’s March trade deficit amounts to more than four times that of market forecasts, though the economy is predicted to grow to an annualized 4.9% in the current quarter.

: Japanese energy group JERA is exploring expanding business operations to include China, with one scenario being that LNG stocks in the PRC be diverted to Japan to meet a shortfall. JERIA is also engaged in building facilities in Vietnam. 

: Japan expresses concern about interdiction of its seabed cables, most of which are concentrated in two landing stations, in time of conflict with China. 

: Australian sources reveal that China has built a new long-range early warning radar that can be used to detect ballistic missiles from thousands of miles away, likely giving it coverage of all of Japan.

: Yomiuri editorializes on the need for Japan and the US to work together to help coastal states improve their capabilities against China’s aggressive expansion into the South China Sea. 

: Abe states that Xi must not doubt Japan’s resolve concerning Taiwan, nor its intention to defend the Senkaku (Diaoyu) Islands and urges the United States to abandon its policy of strategic ambiguity and make clear that it will defend Taiwan against any attempted Chinese invasion. 

: MSDF patrol aircraft monitors the passage of a Chinese Dongdiao-class reconnaissance ship that passed through the Tsushima Strait though without entering Japanese territorial waters.

: Draft of the National Defense Program Guidelines under preparation by an LDP commission calls for changing the description of China from “serious security concern” to “a threat to Japan’s security” and increasing defense spending to 2% or more of GDP from its current 0.957%. 

: Two Chinese academics urge the International Court of Justice to issue an advisory opinion on the illegality of Japan’s planned dumping of contaminated water from the Fukushima nuclear power plant into the sea. 

: US naval expert opines that Japan cannot outpace Chinese naval construction, recommending that it harness the latest technologies to increase the capabilities of its existing platforms.

: 2+2 meeting between Japan and the Philippines agrees to formal discussions on a defense pact that will allow reciprocal visits by their troops for training and to increase interoperability in equipment.

: Defense Minister Kishi Nobuo announces that discussions will proceed on acquiring the capability to attack enemy bases. 

: Chinese companies have displaced their Japanese counterparts in producing automotive battery materials, which account for about a third of the price of EVs and are a major factor in whether an EV can compete on the world market.

: Japan’s ambassador to Australia warns Canberra against overreliance on Chinese trade.

: Air Self-Defense Force says it will upgrade its irregular mobile radar unit on Yonaguni to permanent in response to increasing Chinese activities in the area. 

: Japan ends official development assistance to China after 40 years. 

: Chinese Ministry of Defense spokesperson reiterates that Taiwan is China’s internal affair that Japan must stay out of. 

: Investigation division of the Japanese defense ministry establishes global strategy intelligence officer position in response to the Chinese military’s introduction of advanced technologies like artificial intelligence.

: Japan’s defense ministry says the disparity—in which Japan’s Coast Guard had 69 patrol vessels of 1,000 tons or larger as of the end of fiscal 2020, compared to China’s 131 of comparable size at the end of calendar 2020—is likely to widen. 

: Global Times responds to Foreign Minister Hayashi Yoshimasa’s statement that Japan would help African countries escape China’s debt trap, calling it an absurd, futile attempt to slander Chinese-Africa cooperation.

: Xinhua reports the opening of an exhibition on China’s terra cotta warriors at a museum in Kyoto, in recognition of the 50th anniversary of the normalization of Sino-Japanese diplomatic relations.

: Yomiuri complains that Chinese fishing vessels continue to appear in the South China Sea off the Philippines. 

: Japan’s Diet passes an expanded defense budget aimed at strengthening the alliance with the US, including up to $164 million for advanced virtual combat training systems for joint exercises.

: Responding to Abe’s video call to Tsai, a spokesperson for China’s Taiwan Affairs Office criticizes “certain people” for making malicious remarks.

: Director of Japanese studies at the Chinese Academy of Social Sciences accuses Japan of using the Ukraine crisis to push further against the constraints of its pacifist constitution. 

: Japan commissions its first new Mogami-class multirole frigate, designed to help defend the southwestern Nansei islands against Chinese expansionism.

: Taiwan President Tsai Ing-wen and Abe hold a half-hour videoconference as part of an annual meeting of the 270-member Japan-Republic of China Diet Members’ Consultative Council. Abe reiterates support for Taiwan joining the Comprehensive and Progressive Trans-Pacific Partnership. 

: Japan analysts interpret Tokyo’s tougher response to the Ukraine invasion as likely to portend a stronger response to China should it follow Putin’s lead. 

: National security expert Takamizawa Nobushige advocates total security, including economic power, should be assembled in preparation for a deterrence by denial capability “against outrageous acts.”

: Japan’s Coast Guard’s Mobile Cooperation Team, now in its fifth year of guidance, has been dispatched to 14 countries to advise on tensions in the South China Sea and piracy. 

: Kishida pushes Indian counterpart Narendra Modi for a clearer response to Russia’s invasion of Ukraine. 

: Chinese foreign ministry spokesperson Zhao Lijian accuses Japan of using the Russia-Ukraine conflict to further its militarist motives.

: Japanese amphibious rapid deployment brigade and Okinawa-based US marines hold first airborne landing and combat training exercise.

: Sanctions on Russia following its invasion of Ukraine reportedly give Japanese banks huge leverage over the Chinese economy. 

: Kyodo predicts China may take a softer approach to Japan to curb possible economic downturn as Xi Jinping is eager to secure a third term as leader, but that Tokyo is unlikely to reciprocate.

: Japan’s largest and second-largest circulation newspapers, the center-right Yomiuri and the center-left Asahi, editorialize against the PRC’s declaring respect for territorial integrity while not opposing Russia’s invasion of Ukraine. 

: Japan Times faults China’s long military expansion for rising bilateral tensions. 

: Yomiuri editorializes that China cannot achieve stability while complicit with Russian aggression and its economic outlook is cloudy.

: Members of both the LDP and opposition parties call for a discussion on a nuclear-sharing arrangement with the US, with weapons to be stationed in Japan. 

: Concern with China’s increasing aggression is believed to be a decisive factor in the re-election of a pro-base and pro-Self Defense Forces mayor in Ishigaki, Okinawa.

: Nikkei poll shows that 77% percent of Japanese are concerned that Russia’s invasion of Ukraine will spill over into China using force against Taiwan.

: Chinese media interpret an Abe statement that Japan should consider a nuclear-weapons sharing agreement with the US in the wake of the crisis in Ukraine as unlocking the country’s militarism.

: Xinhua reports that, after a call by Abe to discuss nuclear sharing, Prime Minister Kishida Fumio informs the Diet that “it is unacceptable given our country’s stance of maintaining the three non-nuclear principles.”

: Japanese Press Research Institute survey shows that the proportion of Chinese who have a favorable view of Japan has plunged 13.4 percentage points to an all-time low of 26.3%. 

: Speaking on a morning television talk show, Abe says that it is time for the US to abandon strategic ambiguity about Taiwan and make clear that it would defend Taiwan from a Chinese invasion.

: Japanese officials warn that the international community’s failure to hold Russia in check would send the wrong message to China. 

: After an investigation into the Japanese embassy’s complaint that one of its diplomats had been detained in violation of the Vienna Convention on Diplomatic Relations, Chinese authorities announce that the Japanese claim is not acceptable. 

: Chinese media object to the Japanese ambassador to Canberra’s statement that his country is fully behind Australia on its allegation that a Chinese naval ship pointed a laser at its patrol aircraft.

: In response to concerns over leakage of classified information, the Japanese government seeks 100 billion yen ($8.7 million) for the fiscal year 2022 budget to buy technical documents from such companies. 

: China Daily emphasizes the supply chain difficulties Japanese firms will have if the government’s economic security bill becomes law.

: Media reports that a Japanese man in his 50s has been detained in Shanghai since December, though no charges are known to have been made against him.

: In a step toward diversifying Japan’s semiconductor supply chain, Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Company, along with Sony and auto parts maker Denso, will increase its investment in TSMC’s first plant in Japan. 

: Quad foreign ministers meet in Melbourne a week after China and Russia declared a “no limits strategic partnership,” their most detailed and assertive statement to work together. 

: US and Japanese forces conduct exercise Noble Fusion involving the Aegis-equipped Kongo destroyer and a US aircraft carrier and amphibious assault ship. 

: Asahi criticizes the PRC policy of disappearing people and editorializes that China’s Olympic diplomacy risks creating rifts by not urging Vladimir Putin to refrain from reckless military action. 

: Taipei removes overall ban on products from the Fukushima area, though some items will remain excluded. 

: China becomes the largest importer of Japanese goods for the first time in 2021.

: With China and Russia making progress on the development of high-power microwave (HPM) weapons, Japan’s defense ministry will begin full-scale research and development on HPMs in the fiscal year that begins in April 2022.

: Japan’s Cabinet Office warns that the country’s import structure was “risky,” with 23% of the country’s imports in 2019 coming from China. 

: Japan expert at Shanghai’s Fudan University expresses concern that rightwing forces are slowly taking the initiative in Japan to provoke Sino-Japanese conflict. 

: Responding to Japan’s House of Representatives adopting a resolution of concern on China’s policies in Xinjiang, Tibet, Inner Mongolia, and Hong Kong, a Chinese foreign ministry spokesperson states that Japan has no authority whatsoever to speak on the topic. 

: Tokyo Review speculates that Beijing’s recent fairly restrained attitude toward Japan reflects its assessment that Washington is the real instigator of heightened tensions in the Taiwan Strait. 

: Japan reportedly considers deployment of US military drones at MSDF Kanoya base in Kagoshima. 

: Honda executive predicts that EV sales in China will make or break the company in the next five years. 

: In what Yomiuri says was aimed at countering China’s growing influence in Tonga, Japan dispatches relief supplies to the island kingdom where China accounts for about 60% of external debt. 

: China’s air force sends 39 warplanes toward Taiwan, the largest such intrusion since the record-setting 56 planes of Oct. 4, 2021. 

: Nikkei reports that Japan aims to become self-sufficient in quantum computing, with China seen as catching up, and in some areas surpassing the US. 

: Japan’s defense ministry announces that it scrambled fighter jets against possible airspace intrusions 785 times from April to December 2021, the highest for the same period over the last five years, with 571 or over 70%, being against Chinese aircraft.

: Japan’s ambassador to Poland describes Poles as finding promised China’s economic benefits less than they had expected and advocates that Japan strengthen relations with Poland.

: China’s foreign ministry accuses Japan and the United States of “baselessly smear[ing] and attack[ing] China and wantonly interfer[ing] in China’s domestic affairs” at their recent meeting as well as.

: Kishida tells Biden that he “intends to consider” possession of capabilities to attack enemy bases. 

: Chinese analysts interpret Biden’s virtual meeting with Kishida as a probe to test Tokyo’s loyalty to Washington rather than aimed at producing concrete results. 

: Former SDF Chief of Staff Oriki Ryochi, chair of a study group on policy proposals for the upcoming revision of the National Security Strategy, advocates enhancing Japan’s ability to act independently. 

: China becomes the world’s largest importer of liquefied natural gas in 2021, surpassing Japan.

: Kyodo reports that China is considering a face-to-face ceremony to mark the 50th anniversary of the normalization of relations with Japan and would invite “political and business leaders who have contributed to the development of relations.” 

: Chinese Coast Guard vessels patrol within the territorial waters of the disputed Diaoyu/Senkaku Islands on Jan. 15 for the first time in 2022. 

: Former Prime Minister Abe Shinzo describes Taiwan as the biggest issue of 2022 and calls on the international community continue sending support to Taiwan. 

: Yang Yu, China’s charge d’affaires to Japan, describes Sino-Japanese ties like “a boat sailing against the current…we must forge ahead or it will be driven back.”

: Chinese company Huawei announces it will follow Tesla by selling large-scale battery systems for renewable energy storage in Japan, with both Chinese and US companies able to sell at prices far lower than Japanese producers.

: Mageshima Island is chosen as new training site for US carrier-based aircraft currently using Iwoto for landing practice. 

: Japanese defense industry reportedly contracts even as the threat from China and North Korea grows. 

: At a Japan-Taiwan Exchange Association meeting, Chairperson Ohashi Mitsuo calls for more chip tie-ups between the two; Taiwanese ambassador-equivalent Chiou I-jen thanks Japan for his country’s bid to join the Comprehensive and Progressive Agreement for Trans-Pacific Partnership.

: Yomiuri reports that since spring 2021, Maritime Self-Defense Force destroyers have repeatedly sailed through waters outside the territorial waters of areas that China claims as its territorial waters. 

: Center-left Asahi editorializes that while Japan “may need enough defense to discourage China from taking actions that threaten the regional peace and security.”

: Observing the mismatch between Japanese and Chinese military strength, a Nikkei correspondent advocates giving the Self-Defense Forces the ability to strike back. 

: Chinese professor at Yokohama University interprets the Australia-Japan agreement and the US-Japan 2+2 meeting as Tokyo seeking to discard the shackles of its constitution by joining with the US to contain the PRC. 

: At the virtual 2+2 meeting of foreign affairs and defense ministers, the US and Japan agree to bring together their scientists and engineers to collaborate on emerging defense technologies, including ways to counter hypersonic missiles, increase shared use of facilities, and affirm their commitment to the peaceful resolution of cross-Strait issues. 

: Beijing municipal government fines Japanese-owned 7-11 stores $23,500 for describing Taiwan as an independent country on its website. 

: Chinese foreign ministry spokesperson expresses strong dissatisfaction with the 2+2 agreement, with an academic describing it as motivated by rightwing politicians to justify changing Japan’s war-renouncing constitution.

: Australia and Japan sign a defense agreement to allow greater interoperability of military forces. 

: Taiwan’s foreign ministry declines to comment on reports that when, in February 2019, it proposed to the Japanese government that the two sides regularly exchange intelligence about the locations and activities of Chinese warplanes, it was turned down on grounds that the two have no formal diplomatic ties.

: While not referencing threats, an Asahi editorial expresses skepticism about the government’s plan to increase defense spending given worsening fiscal problems due to higher social security payments and anti-pandemic measures.

: Komeito leader Yamaguchi Natsuo advocates Japan create a permanent framework which would include the US, China, and the other countries of the Indo-Pacific region. 

: Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership (RCEP) agreement enters into force.

: Tokyo Metropolitan Police Department issues a warrant for the arrest of a Chinese citizen in connection with cyberattacks on Japan’s Aerospace Exploration Agency.

: Yomiuri reports that Japan is to establish an embassy in Kiribati and a consular office in Noumea, New Caledonia, to better compete with China.

: Chief Cabinet Secretary Natsuno Hirkazu announces that China and Japan agreed to launch a military hotline next year.

: LDP policy chief Takaichi Sanae criticizes the lateness of the government’s decision on not sending government officials to the Beijing Winter Olympics.

: Center-left Asahi editorializes that the absence of Japanese officials at the Beijing Winter Olympics notwithstanding, continued dialogue with China is essential.

: Chinese and Japanese defense ministers hold video talks. China’s leading military paper quotes Gen. Wei Fenghe as stressing China’s determination to safeguard its territorial sovereignty and maritime rights and interests in the South China Sea, and urging Japan to learn from history. It does not mention, but Kyodo reports, that Kishi “strongly demanded” an explanation for China’s new coast guard law, which gives it the right to search and seize other countries vessels in the islands contested between the two countries.

: Japan’s Taipei ambassador-equivalent Hiroyasu Izumi describes 2021as the year of Taiwan since more countries have stood up to support its free and democratic way of life.

: Bilateral forum backs a partnership between Hitachi Zosen and Yulin Chemical to develop a renewable alternative to natural gas for industrial and household use, though cost remains a major hurdle.

: Japan-Taiwan Co-Prosperity Chiefs Alliance, comprising 127 Japanese city and local officials, holds its first meeting and calls on Tokyo to draw up a Japanese version of the US Taiwan Relations Act.

: Japanese Cabinet approves a 1% increase in the FY 2022 defense budget to $291 billion.

: Chief Cabinet Secretary Hirokazu Matsuno announces that Japan will not send Cabinet members or high-level officials to the Beijing Winter Olympics.

: Japan Coast Guard and Maritime Self-Defense Forces conduct a joint exercise to simulate responses to a Chinese military vessel approaching waters near the contested Diaoyu/Senkaku Islands.

: Kyodo reports that the Japanese and US armed forces have a draft plan for a Taiwan emergency under which the US marine corps would set up temporary bases and deploy troops on the Nansei at the initial stage of a Taiwan emergency.

: Global Times depicts Japan as struggling under the burden of hosting US troops.

: China’s leading military newspaper notes Tokyo’s concern that if the US were to adopt a no-first-use nuclear policy, its function as an umbrella for Japan would be lost.

: Chinese state-owned FAW group, targeting the Japanese market for electric cars, will offer a hybrid version of its SUV next summer.

: China’s leading military newspaper describes Abe’s remarks as driven by rightwing adventurism, citing a Japanese academic’s opinion that Abe is obsessed with realizing what his Class-A war criminal grandfather Kishi Nobusuke could not.

: Global Times, referencing Abe’s “repeated provocations over the Taiwan question” describes him as Japan’s chief anti-China politician.

: Former defense minister and current head of the LDP’s public relations division Kono Taro backs a visit to China by current Foreign Minister Hayashi.

: Former PM Abe warns Beijing that it would be “suicidal” to invade Taiwan and advises that Taiwan, the US, and Japan to work together to strengthen their deterrent capabilities.

: Ninth annual meeting of the Japan-Taiwan Cultural Exchange Summit is held in Kobe, with the organizers reporting that attendance was greater than expected due to resistance to China’s coercive tactics.

: Beijing uses commemoration of the 1937 Nanjing Massacre as a “barometer” of Japan’s support for the Beijing Olympics warning that if Japan does not participate, the bilateral relationship will veer into a downward spiral.

: Observing that 99 members of Japan’s House of Representatives including nine deputy ministerial-level government officials visited the Yasukuni Shrine on the 80th anniversary of the attack on Pearl Harbor, China’s leading military newspaper criticizes the action as “a slap in the face of the United States.”

: Sugiura Yasuyuki, senior researcher at the National Institute for Defense Studies, tells Yomiuri that Japan must have the “correct” amount of fear about China.

: Oxford Economics note says that in 2020 Japan spent a greater percentage of its foreign direct investment in the ASEAN 5 economies (Thailand, Indonesia, Malaysia, and the Philippines) and the Asian Tigers (Singapore, South Korea, Hong Kong and Taiwan) than it did in China.

: Retired Japanese admiral advocates that Japan consider hosting US intermediate-range ballistic missiles. An accompanying chart shows the discrepancy between the reach of Chinese vs Japanese naval missiles.

: Chinese foreign ministry summons Japan’s ambassador in Beijing to an emergency meeting to refute Abe’s remarks, calling them “erroneous” and a violation of the basic norms of relations.

: Former Prime Minister Abe warns that a Chinese attack on Taiwan would be an emergency for Japan and could meet the conditions for Tokyo to use military force.

: Japanese government approves a supplementary budget increase defense spending for FY 2021 to $52,8 billion, or 1.09% of GDP, the highest percentage in a decade.

: Citing threats stemming from North Korea and China, Kishisda says that he does not rule out options such as striking at enemy bases.

: Yomiuri points out the importance of the conversion of two destroyers into de facto aircraft carriers given their role in case of a Chinese attack on Japan’s remote islands.

: Japan and Vietnam sign a cybersecurity agreement as they step up military ties amid concerns over China’s growing assertiveness.

: Nikkei reports that Japan and Australia will sign a pact enabling each country’s forces to enter the other for joint exercises.

: Former Chinese Foreign Minister Yang Jiechi invites counterpart Hayashi to visit the PRC, but without setting a date. The last such visit was in December 2019.

: Nikkei reports that the Japanese government will exercise tighter scrutiny on supply chains for missiles, ships, and other equipment, restricting the use of Chinese-made equipment.

: Japanese government protests the apparently intentional entry of a Chinese navy survey ship into Japanese coastal waters on Nov. 17.

: In his first telephone call to counterpart Wang Yi, newly appointed Japanese Foreign Minister Hayashi emphasizes the importance of peace and stability in the Taiwan Strait.

: A joint bilateral opinion poll in August and September finds that 66.1% of Chinese have a bad impression of Japan, up 13.2 points over the previous year and the first time that impressions had worsened since 2013.

: Yomiuri reports that the United States and Japan have conducted their first joint drills, citing MSDF Chief of Staff Admiral Yamamura Hiroshi as saying that the drills show the high level of interoperability between the forces of the two countries.

: Chinese military analysts play down the significance of the joint US-Japan exercises, with expert Song Zhongping terming any attempt to hunt PLA submarines a “daydream.”

: Global Times cites a Japanese professor at Shenzhen University as disputing Japanese concerns about the outflow of technology to China, 2021: truth is that more research in China is brought back to Japan than vice-versa.

: Japanese destroyer Inazuma escorts Australian frigate Warramunga during a joint exercise, the first time a Japanese vessel has protected warships other than those of the US.

: In what Nikkei calls one of the most aggressive international expansions by a Japanese restaurant brand, sushi chain Sushiro plans to open between 42 to 46 locations in China in addition to the one it opened in Guangzhou in September.

: Asahi editorializes that the Chinese Communist Party’s effort to rewrite history so that the public will embrace the official version of its past will only push China further away from the rest of the world.

: Hayashi announces his intention to resign as chair of the Japan-China Friendship Association “to avoid unnecessary misunderstandings in performing [his] duties as foreign minister.”

: Kishida appoints pro-China former Defense Minister Hayashi Yoshimasa as foreign minister.

: Defense Minister Kishi, welcoming the first port call by a German warship to Tokyo in 20 years, says that the two countries will step up their military cooperation in defense of a free and open Indo-Pacific. The frigate Bayern participated in two days of exercises with MSDF destroyer Samidare.

: Japan Times editorializes that Beijing is building a military to rewrite rules of the Indo-Pacific region, and urges Tokyo to increase its defense budget while integrating more deeply with the US and other security partners.

: Asahi editorializes that Xi Jinping and Kishida must make efforts to stop the cycle of mutual mistrust.

: Japan’s Government Pension Investment Fund (GPIF) decides to exclude renminbi-denominated Chinese sovereign bonds from its portfolio.

: According to a Taiwanese Public Opinion Foundation poll, 58% of respondents think it possible that Japan would send troops to defend Taiwan.

: Chinese internet conglomerate Tencent is to acquire a 6.86% stake in Japanese publishing giant Kadokawa, making Tencent Kadokawa’s third largest shareholder.

: Foreign Minister Motegi Toshimitsu describes ties with China as remaining in a difficult situation as the two prepare for the 50th anniversary of the normalization of bilateral diplomatic ties.

: Deputy Chief Cabinet Secretary Isozaki Yoshihiko states that the government has been monitoring the passage of a joint Chinese-Russian flotilla traversing Japanese chokepoints.

: Foreign Minister Wang Yi offers five suggestions on improving China-Japan ties such as managing their differences and upgrading cooperation in sundry spheres.

: Sony’s Chinese subsidiary is fined $156,000 for violating China’s advertising laws over its plan to hold a new product launch event on the anniversary of the Marco Polo bridge Beijing commemorates as the beginning of the war with Japan.

: Kishida expresses willingness to specify the possession of capabilities to destroy enemy missile bases in the new National Security Strategy.

: Chinese media criticize Japanese plans to double the defense budget, seeing them as connected with attempts to revise the country’s constitution by clarifying the role of the military.

: Sony discusses with the Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Company (TSMC) the possibility of jointly building a new semiconductor plant.

: US analysis urges US and Japanese officials to think through many potential scenarios in a Taiwan contingency and clarify to each other privately their potential responses, since a Taiwan contingency is likely to require quick thinking and a decisive response.

: Japan’s defense ministry plans to enlist YouTube stars and other opinion leaders to help it lobby for a bigger defense budget, due to the gap between Chinese military spending and that of Japan.

: Bloomberg reports that Japanese utilities are stepping in to help ease China’s fuel crisis by selling excess liquefied natural gas at sky-high prices.

: China’s leading military newspaper takes issue with Suga’s presence at the Quadrilateral Security Dialogue just before leaving office.

: Chinese media criticize the Takaichi-Tsai meeting, particularly video footage of Takaichi hanging the Taiwan and Japanese flags side by side.

: Prime Minister candidate Kono Taro describes a best-case scenario for defense as aligning with the “Five Eyes”—Australia, Britain, Canada, New Zealand, and the United States—with Japan as the sixth eye.

: Takaichi Sanae, another contender in the LDP leadership race, confers with Taiwan President Tsai Ing-wen, with The Japan Times noting that it is extremely rare for a Japanese politician to hold a meeting with any senior Taiwanese officials.

: Kishi urges European states to speak out against China’s military expansion.

: According to former dean of Beijing University’s School of International Studies Jia Qingguo, China’s bid to join the CPTPP is designed to split the US and Japan.

: Kishi states that the Diaoyu/Senkaku are “unquestionably Japanese territory” and will be defended as such.

: Chinese observers of Japan’s largest Self-Defense Forces exercises since 1993 describe them as designed to challenge the PRC’s sovereignty and demonstrate loyalty to the US Indo-Pacific strategy.

: Yomiuri editorializes that the Japan Coast Guard must strengthen its ability to protect the Diaoyu/Senkaku Islands against Chinese encroachment.

: Responding to Kishi, the PRC embassy in Vietnam accuses Japan of interference in China’s affairs through the Taiwan question.

: In a speech in Vietnam on his first overseas trip as defense minister, Kishi Nobuo criticizes China and highlights the key role Taiwan can play in the world.

: Japan Coast Guard confirms a submarine believed to be Chinese is cruising underwater within Japan’s contiguous zone east of Amami Oshima.

: Taiwan Japan Academy is launched at Taipei’s National Chengchi University, with ambassador-equivalent head of the Japan-Taiwan Exchange Association Izumi Hiroyasu saying that the passing of the old generation of Japanese-speaking Taiwanese such as former president Lee Teng-hui makes the academy’s work more important than ever.

: Nikkei observes that US Space Force head Gen. John Raymond didn’t give a direct answer when asked if the US would consider applying the mutual defense provision of the US-Japan security treaty to the space domain.

: Global Times describes the passage of a Chinese destroyer flotilla in the waters between Taiwan and Japan as sending a warning to Japanese right-wing forces and Taiwan secessionists at a time when the two have been colluding to sabotage the peace and stability of the region.

: Global Times editorializes that Japan is in its worst geopolitical environment since the Meiji Restoration and terms its hatred toward China as “morally dirty.”

: Commander of British aircraft carrier visiting Japan reveals that the carrier had been escorted and shadowed by Chinese units, but in a safe and professional manner.

: In a surprise remote call to a conference on Japan-Taiwan relations, Deputy Defense Minister Nakayama Yasuhide declares that Japan and Taiwan are not friends but family members.

: A Kyoto-themed shopping complex in Dalian is forced to suspend operations after internet criticism that the Japanese government is engaged in a cultural invasion.

: Yomiuri editorializes that should Japan steadily enhance its defense capabilities in response to China’s military buildup, with particular attention to detecting hypersonic glide vehicles.

: An opinion piece in Japan Forward advocates that Japan establish a “territorial army” to counter China’s maritime militia, with special reference to the Diaoyu/Senkaku Islands.

: Global Times editorializes against taking too seriously Kishida’s vow to make dealing with China a top priority if elected.

: Speculating on Beijing’s concern with any post-Suga shift in Japan’s Taiwan policy, Kyodo cites unnamed Beijing diplomats’ opinion that China would avoid taking a hardline approach to Japan until after the Beijing Winter Olympics and Paralympics in February and March, since it wants Japanese participation.

: Signaling increased concern with Chinese assertiveness in the waters around Japan, British aircraft carrier HMS Queen Elizabeth makes its first port call in Japan.

: Former Foreign Minister Kishida Fumio, a candidate to succeed Prime Minister Suga, says that Japan should seek to cooperate with Taiwan and countries that shares its values of freedom, democracy, and the rule of law. He would encourage Taiwan to join the Trans-Pacific Partnership if it “can meet the necessary high standards.”

: Japan’s Defense Ministry notified Okinawa prefectural authorities that it plans to install an SSM battery at the GSDF’s Katsuren sub-camp so that, together with other installations, the Miyako Strait will have full protection. The intent is to prevent enemy landings on outlying islands, including the disputed Senkaku/Diaoyu group.

: Noting Suga’s stance that a Taiwan crisis could have ripple effects on Japan and the need to “focus on Taiwan,” Japan Forward says it sends a message to China that there is the possibility of joint US-Japanese military intervention on behalf of Taiwan.

: Seeking to strengthen Japan’s defenses against China’s growing assertiveness, the defense ministry requested a 2.6% increase to ¥ 5.48 trillion ($49.86 billion) in its budget for fiscal year 2022.

: In a potential flashpoint for the Diaoyu/Senkaku Islands dispute, Japanese fishing boats operating in the surrounding waters may face enforcement actions under China’s new Maritime Traffic Safety Law imposing fines on foreign-flagged vessels for sailing in waters it claims as its own.

: In the third consecutive day of Chinese drone sightings, the ASDF scrambles planes after three Chinese military aircraft, one of them an TB-001 unmanned aerial vehicle, enter airspace between the main island of Okinawa and Miyakojima.

: The first-ever Taiwan-Japan security talks take place, largely focusing on Taiwanese chip makers’ potential investment in Japan.

: Japan participates in the annual Malabar naval exercise alongside Australia, India, and the US, with Global Times denigrating the operation.

: Yomiuri editorializes that China’s buildup of silos, reportedly for the Dongfeng-41 intercontinental missile that would pose a major threat to the United States, goes far beyond its claim to keep nuclear capabilities at the minimum level required.

: Referencing reports that security talks will be held between the LDP and the DPP, a spokesperson for the Chinese State Council’s Taiwan Affairs Office admonishes Japan and Taiwan’s ruling party.

: Yomiuri editorializes that the Japanese government needs to rebuild the nation’s research system as soon as possible, since science labs are the new front line with a rising China.

: Nikkei cites unnamed analysts who say that Japan’s plan to station anti-aircraft, anti-ship missiles, and hundreds of troops on Ishigaki island, 300 km from Taiwan, is aimed as much at defending Taiwan as Japan.

: Japan’s defense ministry decides not to request funds in the fiscal 2022 budget for a sea-based missile defense system that would also have monitored Chinese naval ships’ advances into waters around Japan.

: Japan’s defense ministry announces that it will seek a fiscal 2022 budget of more than ¥5.4 trillion ($49.3 billion) that could surpass the longstanding cap of 1%.

: Jiji reports that, at the request of the Japanese side, the LDP will hold online talks with Taiwan’s ruling Democratic Progressive Party within the month, the equivalent of the 2-plus-2 security dialogues between governments.

: Japanese exporter of a motor that converts electrical signals into movements of a machine is preventedfrom exporting to China over the products’ potential military purposes.

: China’s Association of Performing Arts calls for a boycott of actor Zhang Zhehan after photos of him visiting Yasukuni Shrine in 2018 and 2019 circulated online.

: In response to Chinese ships entering Japanese territorial waters near the Senkakus and illegal fishing by Chinese and North Korean vessels, Japan reportedly intends to launch a new surveillance system that identifies suspicious ships by combining artificial intelligence and satellite technology.

: A second Cabinet member, Defense Minister Kishi, visits the Yasukuni Shrine, eliciting a solemn response from the Chinese government. A spokesperson for China’s defense ministry admonishes Japan to reflect truthfully on its history of aggression and objects to “a lot of negative acts” when dealing with China.

: Prime Minister Suga tells Newsweek magazine that the government should not feel bound by the informal 1 % cap of GDP, reinforcing comments by Defense Minister Kishi in May.

: Asahi takes Nishimura Yasutoshi, head of the central government’s effort against the pandemic, to task for ignoring his own advice by visiting the Yasukuni Shrine during the state of emergency.

: Japan’s surge in orders of Taiwan pineapples after China banned them results in improved sales, with a Taiwan Council on Agriculture official announcing that “the bleeding was stopped before it even began.”

: Speaking at the ASEAN Regional Forum, Foreign Minister Motegi Toshimitsu voices Japan’s strong opposition to unilateral attempts to change the status quo in the East and South China seas by force.

: Global Times compares Japan’s military construction on the islands close to Taiwan to cannon fodder for the US to contain China’s rise.

: Defense Minister Kishi confirms plans to station an additional 500 to 600 missile defense personnel on Ishigaki, which is close to the disputed Diaoyu/Senkaku Islands and 185 miles from Taiwan.

: China’s embassy in Australia claims its ambassador “excoriated” his Japanese counterpart at a National Press Club event for downplaying imperial Japan’s wartime atrocities, but a spokesperson for the Japanese embassy denies that the incident took place.

: New Zealand Herald reports that a video circulating on official CCP channels warns that if Japan so much as deploys one soldier, plane, or ship in defense of Taiwan China will not hesitate to use nuclear weapons.

: Chinese foreign ministry spokesperson Zhao Lijian responds to the publication of Japan’s 2021 defense white paper by admonishing Japan to maintain basic respect for China’s internal affairs.

: Center-right Yomiuri, noting signs of softening in the Chinese economy such as chip shortages, rising resource costs, a stronger yuan and the ongoing dispute with the US, predicts that a downtrend will likely have a significant negative impact on Japan.

: On the fifth anniversary of the Permanent Court of Arbitration’s judgment against China’s claims in the South China Sea, The Japan Times editorializes in favor of the ruling, calling it a “brick in the wall supporting the rules-based order” that must be supported.

: Asahi applauds defense ministry’s decision against replacing last year’s “strong national security concern” to “strong national security threat,” but criticizes the review for not specifying what should be done to build a peaceful, stable relationship with the PRC.

: Contributor to Jiefangjun Bao opines that Japanese politicians’ recent activity on the Taiwan question reflects Japan’s sense of helplessness at China rise, its sense of loss at its declining influence over the Taiwan question, and its sense of fear for its security when China achieves “full reunification.”

: Japan’s 2021 defense white paper is released, devoting three times as much coverage to China than to the United States in outlining the defense programs of various nations.

: A film shown on Chinese television urges that, if Japan intervenes militarily on the side of Taiwan, China should be exempted from its pledge of no-first-use of nuclear weapons

: Global Times responds to Aso’s statement by saying that if Japan involves itself militarily in the Taiwan question it will be “digging its own grave.”

: Twenty-four memorial halls in 14 of China’s provincial-level regions commemorate the 84th anniversary of the full-scale Sino-Japanese War.

: Director of the Institute of Northeast Asian Studies at the Heilongjiang Provincial Academy of Social Sciences says Tokyo is using Taiwan as a bargaining chip in order to increase its discourse power on the Diaoyu/Senkaku Islands issue and to contain China’s influence in the Asia-Pacific region.

: Deputy Prime Minister Aso Taro states that if China were to invade Taiwan, the move could be interpreted as a threat to Japan’s survival, enabling the SDF to be deployed for collective self-defense under security laws enacted in 2015.

: Japan’s Defense Ministry announces plans to increase cybersecurity staff in response to increasingly sophisticated attacks.

: Japanese Communist Party is the sole major party in the Diet not to extend its congratulations to the Chinese Communist Party on the centenary of the latter’s founding in 1921.

: A ranking of 15 global cyberpowers by London’s International Institute for Strategic Studies places Japan in the bottom of the three tiers, below China and Russia.

: Financial Times reports that the US and Japan have been conducting war games and joint military exercises in the event of a conflict with China over Taiwan.

: State Minister of Defense Nakayama Yasuhide says it was necessary for countries including Japan and the US to “wake up” to Beijing’s pressure on Taiwan and protect the island as a democratic country.

: Chinese official Jing Duan, addressing the United Nations Human Rights Council, urges Japan to treat the issue of World War II-era sexual slavery in an honest and responsible manner.

: Japan ratifies the Chinese-led Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership.

: Two US analysts advocate that Japan respond to increasing Chinese assertiveness by disavowing pacifism and embracing collective defense.

: Chinese Coast Guard 2301 fleet conducts a patrol in the territorial waters off the disputed Diaoyu/Senkaku islands, the sixth time since the beginning of 2021 such patrols have been publicly announced.

: Speaking to the European Parliament’s security and defense subcommittee, DM Kishi expresses “serious concern” with China’s steady buildup of its military capacity and lack of clarity about its intentions.

: In an interview with Bloomberg, Kishi says explicitly that the security of Taiwan is directly connected to that of Japan, and that Tokyo is closely watching China-Taiwan ties as well as Chinese military activity.

: Draft of the Japanese defense military’s 2021 white paper states, for the first time, the strategic importance of Taiwan for Japan’s national security and the stabilization of the international community.

: Chinese Academy of Social Sciences expert accuses Japan of making a “wild bet on the Taiwan card.” He predicts that such actions as sending vaccine to Taiwan and expressing concern about the Taiwan Strait situation in a two plus two meeting with Australia would send China-Japan relations “back to the freezing point.”

: China’s State Council Taiwan Affairs Office objects to “the latest moves by multiple Japanese government officials who have openly referred to Taiwan as ‘a country.”

: Chief Cabinet Secretary Kato Katsunobu says there has been no change in Japan’s basic policy to maintain working relations with Taiwan at the nongovernment level.

: Joint opinion poll by Yomiuri and South Korea’s Hankook Ilbo finds that 88% of Japanese and 72% of South Korean respondents think that the military pressure that China is putting on its neighbors is a threat to their countries.

: Tokyo University Professor Sahashi Ryo urges the Japanese government to end its policy of excessive self-imposed restraints on official interactions with Taiwan for fear of offending Beijing.

: Reports say Japan’s education ministry will ask 14 universities that host Confucius Institutes to provide information on matters like funding, number of participating students, and whether the CI intervenes in research.

: LDP’s Foreign Affairs Division proposes third update to US-Japan defense guidelines including Japanese participation in freedom of navigation exercises in the South China Sea and a focus on contingencies during a conflict in the Taiwan Strait.

: Japanese Coast Guard confirms presence of four China Coast Guard vessels in the contiguous zone off the Senkaku/Diaoyu Islands, and that they mark a record 112 consecutive days of such intrusions.

: Japan’s first shipment of 1.4 million doses of AstraZeneca vaccine arrives in Taiwan, sent via the unofficial Taiwan-Japan Relations Association to avoid charges of violating Beijing’s one China policy.

: Suga, speaking at the Pacific Islands Leaders Meeting, urges the 18 nations to unite against authoritarianism and in favor of freedom navigation in the high seas and respect for international law.

: Director of the Institute of Northeast Asian Studies at the Heilongjiang Provincial Academy of Social Sciences characterizes an LDP-proposed growth strategy linking economic policies and business activities directly to national security as a revival of fukoku kyōhei, the Meiji-era’s call to “enrich the country and strengthen the military.”

: In response to repeated advances of China’s carrier fleet into the Pacific Ocean, it is reported that Japan’s defense ministry will deploy the Air Self-Defense Force’s mobile radar unit to the Ogasawara Islands to watch for violations of Japanese air space.

: Japanese and EU leaders release a joint statement that “underscored the importance of peace and stability across the Taiwan Strait” and calls for “enhanced cooperation for a free and open Pacific.”

: Yomiuri reports that, with China in mind, Japan will strengthen regulations to prevent the outflow of military-related technology.

: Specifically referencing China’s increased capabilities as well as new areas of warfare such as space, cyber, and electromagnetics, Defense Minister Kishi Nobuo signals the end of Japan’s self-imposed 1% GDP cap for annual defense spending.

: China denies any connection between its flotilla passing through the Miyako Strait and the joint Japanese, US, French, and Australian exercises that had concluded the day before.

: For the first time, the Japanese government publicly identifies China as responsible for a cyberattack.

: Annual report of the Japanese Coast Guard reveals that the number of large-sized Chinese Coast Guard vessels has more than tripled over the past eight years.

: ARC21—large-scale joint military maneuvers among Japan, the US, and France—take place for the first time on Japanese soil.

: Yomiuri covers a ceremony to commemorate the centennial of the start of a dam and irrigation project in southern Taiwan led by an engineer from Kanazawa.

: Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesperson Wang Wenbin describes moves by Japan and the United States to make supply chains less reliant on the PRC violations of the principles of fair competition.

: China’s leading military newspaper says that Japan is moving yet further from the defense-only stipulation in its constitution.

: A retired GSDF officer urges Japan to develop a deterrent credible enough to convince China that armed clashes over Taiwan would be unproductive and irrational.

: US Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin suggests a new concept of integrated deterrence that calls for Japan to assume a role in the numerous chokepoints of the Nansei Islands group.

: A report says leading Japanese infrastructure companies such and NTT and Kyushu Electric Power are replacing Chinese-made drones due to concerns with security.

: Japanese government lodges diplomatic protest against the presence of a Chinese marine research vessel conducting unauthorized research within Japan’s Exclusive Economic Zone, the first confirmed incursion around the Okinawa area since July 2019.

: Documents obtained by Kyodo from the US National Archives reveal the Fukuda administration in April 1978 asked then-US President Jimmy Carter’s government to amend its position of neutrality over the Diaoyu/Senkaku Islands but was rebuffed.

: Panasonic reveals plans to outsource production of televisions to its Chinese rival TCK, the world’s largest TV maker.

: Controversy swirls around the security implications of Chinese company Tencent’s acquisition of a 3.65% share in wireless carrier Rakuten that did not receive the pre-screening by Japan’s newly amended Foreign Exchange and Foreign Trade Act.

: China issues solemn representations to Japan over the latter’s newly released diplomatic blue book, which terms the Chinese Coast Guard’s repeated entries into Japanese territorial waters a violation of international law.

: Japanese newspapers report that the Chinese navy, already the world’s largest, has launched three new vessels—a ballistic missile submarine, a destroyer, and an amphibious assault ship.

: 74% of respondents to a Nikkei telephone poll reportedly support Japan’s engagement in Taiwan issues.

: To bolster its claim to the Diaoyu/Senkaku Islands, China’s Ministry of National Resources releases a topographical study of the area based on satellite images.

: Japan lodges forceful protest demanding the removal of a tweet by a Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesman adapting a famous Hokusai print into an image of nuclear waste being poured into the sea by people in Hazmat suits.

: Yao Chung-yuan, former deputy director of Taiwan’s Ministry of Defense’s strategic planning department, argues that a quasi-military alliance has emerged among Japan, Taiwan, and the US to counter the threat from China.

: A signed editorial by Global Times’ editor-in-chief warns Japan that if they follow the US, they will definitely become the target of the PLA.

: Nikkei reports that although Suga deflected pressure from NSC Indo-Pacific Coordinator Kurt Campbell for a Japanese version of the US Taiwan Relations Act, Biden had not raised the issue, with Suga informing his aides afterward that “the Senkakus and Taiwan are linked.”

: South China Morning Post reports that, in response to an opposition politician in the Diet asking about Japan’s commitment to defend Taiwan at the summit with Biden, Suga replied that the statement “does not presuppose military involvement at all.”

: Renmin Ribao notes that,although Suga sent a ritual masakaki offering to the Yasukuni shrine’s spring festival he did not personally attend, nor did Cabinet ministers.

: Aiming to counter China’s rapid expansion in the construction of undersea communication cables, Japanese, Australian, and US officials reportedly agreed to strengthen information sharing on China’s activities and cooperate in financing submarine cables in strategically important areas.

: Asahi editorializes that, although solid backing from the US is vital to defending the Senkaku Islands, the joint statement about the importance of peace and stability across the Taiwan Strait puts Japan in danger of being drawn into a security emergency.

: China’s Foreign Ministry expresses its “strong dissatisfaction and firm opposition” to Japan’s decision to release treated radioactive water accumulated at the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power plant.

: Regarding Suga’s meeting with President Biden, the Chinese Foreign Ministry expresses “serious concerns” over negative moves and collusion between the two countries against China.

: At two-plus-two security talks, German and Japanese foreign and security ministers exchange views on China’s territorial claims in the East and South China sea and express grave concern over the situation in Hong Kong and Xinjiang.

: Japan calls for an in-person Quad summit on the sidelines of the G7 meeting in June.

: Suga announces plans to visit India and the Philippines, both of whom have border disputes with the PRC, in late August, though the trips are later cancelled over COVID concerns.

: Signaling a closer defense relationship with India, Japan makes its first project-type grant to an Indian-owned Andaman island.

: In a telephone call to Foreign Minister Wang Yi, Japanese counterpart Motegi expresses Japan’s “serious concerns” over China’s treatment of Uyghurs and Hong Kong. Wang responds that China opposes interference in its internal affairs. Motegi also voices concern over China’s activities in the South China Sea and its new law empowering coast guard vessels to fire on foreign ships within a maritime jurisdiction determined by China.

: Global Times reports that Wang warned Motegi that bilateral ties had been “soured by Japan’s intense hobnobbing with the US,” and its interference in China’s internal affairs regarding Xinjiang and Hong Kong.

: Chinese aircraft carrier Liaoning and five escort vessels pass through the Miyako Strait for the first time since April 2020.

: Declassified documents obtained by Kyodo from the US National Archives reveal that the US government rejected requests from its military to resume use of a bombing base in the Diaoyu/Senkaku Islands lest it become involved in the China-Japan dispute over their sovereignty.

: Yomiuri cites a source close to the Defense Ministry saying that, in response to China’s military buildup, the large-scale deployment of F-35Bs will be a “decisive measure for the defense of remote islands.”

: Nikkei reports that a meeting of LDP lawmakers last week heard that China is planning to build up land around the disputed Diaoyu/Senkaku Islands and move 20,000 people there.

: Chinese Foreign Ministry expresses “grave concern” over Japan-Indonesian 2+2 talks, saying that the Indonesian side had “clarified the situation” (without specifying how) and urges Japanese media to stop creating false news.

: Two-plus-two talks between Japan and Indonesia centering on shared concerns over China’s growing territorial claims in the East and South China seas result in agreement on the transfer of Japanese defense equipment and technology to Jakarta.

: According to Renmin Ribao, at the third annual meeting of the China-Japan maritime and air liaison mechanism and fifth round of working-level consultations on defense affairs, China reiterates that the Diaoyu/Senkaku Islands are China’s inherent territory and urges Japan to stop provoking China and making groundless accusations against it. Japanese papers do not mention the meeting.

: Japanese government sources state that local opposition to the deployment of a Ground Self-Defencs Forces detachment on Yonaguni Island has diminished.

: Yomiuri editorializes on the urgency of drawing up clear rules to prevent technology leaks to China and other countries.

: Chief Cabinet Secretary Kato, expresses “grave concern” over PRC human rights violations but points out that Tokyo lacks a legal framework for the imposition of “sanctions directly and explicitly connected to human rights issues.”

: It is reported that Toyota will manufacture key components of fuel cell vehicles in the PRC as early as 2022. This will be the first time Toyota has produced such components outside Japan.

: DM Kishi hints that the SDF and US military may conduct joint drills around disputed Diaoyu/Senkaku Islands.

: Chief Cabinet Secretary Kato Katsunobu expresses “strong displeasure” at a comment by a Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesperson that Japan is a “strategic vassal” of the United States.

: The MSDF commissions the Aegis-equipped destroyer, the Haguro, completing its fleet arrangement as advocated in the 2013 National Defense Program Guidelines.

: Center-left Asahi editorializes against allowing the Quad to be seen as anti-China.

: It is reported that two Japan-based manufacturers of semiconductor wafers, one headed by a Chinese national, are turning to China in an effort to catch up with top producers Shin-etsu Chemical and Sumco.

: It is reported that, led by chip-making equipment, nonferrous metals and plastic, Japanese exports to China reportedly rise 3.4% in February.

: A US defense website reports that Japan’s Office of National Space Policy has signed a “historic” memorandum of understanding to launch two US payloads into Geostationary Earth Orbit on Japan’s Quasi Zenith Satellite System to help surveillance of Chinese space activities.

: Japanese Ambassador Yamagami Shingo assures Australia that it “is not walking alone” in dealing with an increasingly aggressive China, which is of great concern to his country.

: Responding to the 6.8% increase in China’s defense budget, an Asahi editorial asks how the world can buy the narrative of peaceful development that China is trying to sell.

: Chinese military newspaper Jiefangjun Bao, says it is a nation’s right to determine its defense expenditure and how it will be used.

: Foreign Minister Wang Yi states that China’s new coast guard law does not target any specific country.

: Nikkei reports that, amid worsening ties with China, the pro-China wing of the ruling Liberal Democratic Party has lost ground to its pro-Taiwan wing.

: Japan’s coast guard reports that 14 Chinese marine patrol vessels entered Japanese waters in the first month that China’s new law on its coast guard went into effect.

: According to a memo written in 2018 and declassified in the final days of the Trump administration but not made public until February 2021, the US will defend both Taiwan and the Senkaku Islands in an “emergency.”

: Article 7 of police duties execution law permits Japan Coast Guard to use weapons on vessels trying to land on the Senkaku Islands when perpetrators who commit crimes categorized as violent and dangerous offer resistance.

: Chinese analysts opine that, due largely to their high volumes of trade with the PRC, Japan and Germany “are less likely [than the other G7 members] to be roped into joining the US-led ‘counter China alliance.’”

: South China Morning Post reports increasing resistance to influential LDP policymaker Nikai Toshihiro within his own party for his ties to Beijing.

: Chinese netizens voice approval of a seven-tip list for Japanese in a Chinese competition show, including avoiding “culturally sensitive topics” like the 2008 Wenchuan earthquake, visits to the Yasukuni Shrine, “confusing statements regarding the keyword Taiwan,” and wearing clothing that features the Japanese flag.

: Kyodo cites a statement by Defense Department press secretary John Kirby that the US “support[s] Japan obviously in that sovereignty,” appearing to back Japan’s sovereignty over the islands and contradicting past statements that the US takes no position. Another Defense Department spokesperson later “clarifies” that “there is no change to US policy.”

: Japanese ambassador to Bangladesh Ito Naoki states that Japan has been incentivizing its companies to shift manufacturing facilities out of China.

: Japan’s Foreign Minister Motegi Toshimitsu describes as “truly regrettable and unacceptable” Chinese coast guard vessels’ intrusion into what the Japanese government considers its territorial waters for two successive days.

: It is reported that Japan will build three transport ships to supply ammunition, fuel, and provisions to troops stationed on its outlying islands. The expected date of deployment is 2024.

: Kyodo reports that the Japanese government is hesitant to impose sanctions on Myanmar following the military coup, fearing that doing so would drive the military closer to China.

: Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Company (TSMC) approves a plan to invest up to $177.7 million in a fully owned subsidiary in Ibaraki prefecture that will expand its research into 3D semiconductor material.

: Japan Parliamentary Alliance on China adopts a statement condemning the PRC government for its violations of Uyghur human rights and calling for legislation to impose sanctions on high-ranking foreign government officials and organizations involved in the violation of human rights.

: Foreign Policy Research Institute analysis states that if China is to establish maritime primacy in the Indo-Pacific, it must first get its navy beyond the Ryukyu Islands.

: LDP leaders reportedly form Taiwan project team to consider ways to strengthen relations with Taiwan.

: Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesperson Wang Wenbin states that its coast guard’s intrusion into territorial waters claimed by Japan are legitimate measures taken to safeguard sovereignty in accordance with the law.

: Head of the LDP’s Foreign Affairs Division announces creation of a Taiwan project team that will, inter alia, discuss the possibility of a counterpart to America’s Taiwan Relations Act.

: A Nikkei article co-authored by a Chinese and Japanese argues that Beijing must realize that it needs the world on its side if it is to realize the Chinese dream.

: Tokyo conveys “strong concerns” to Beijing over China’s new coast guard legislation.

: Japanese and British foreign and defense ministers express concern about China’s new law empowering its coast guard to use weapons against foreign vessels in contested waters claimed by the PRC.

: Global Times criticizes Tokyo for taking the West’s side in opposing the military coup in Myanmar.

: Professor at the Japan Coast Guard Academy observes that increasing numbers of Chinese fishing vessels is leading to resource depletion in the Sea of Japan the South China Sea, and the Galapagos Islands.

: Japan’s participation is expected with Five Eyes in a multinational fund for the development of 5G telecommunications technology and strengthening of the supply network to prevent the spread of equipment made in China.

: Japanese manufacturer Panasonic withdrawal from solar cell and panel production in 2022 is announced, as it cannot compete with Chinese rivals’ ability to produce the items at lower cost, leaving Kyocera and Sharp as the only major Japanese companies that produce solar batteries and panels.

: Japan’s government reacts to new Chinese regulations allowing its coast guard to enforce restrictions, including the use of weapons, in areas administered by Japan but claimed by China, with an unnamed Defense Ministry official warning it has the potential to “shake the order based on international law.”

: Japan’s government requests its embassy-equivalent in Tokyo to ask Taiwan, the world’s largest production base for semiconductor products, to increase output since chips for automobiles are in short supply.

: Chinese orders placed with Japanese machine toolmakers increase 23.5% in 2020 even as companies suffer sharp falls from the US and even more so from Europe.

: Responding to affirmations for Japan’s position on the Diaoyu/Senkaku Islands by Biden, Secretary of State Antony Blinken, Defense Secretary Austin, and National Security Adviser Jake Sullivan, a Chinese military expert comments that the PLA needs “emergency plans as well as plans for potential combat in the future.”

: The Second Japan-China Capital Markets Forum, an initiative to strengthen cooperation between the securities markets of the two countries, is held online.

: In first US-Japanese ministerial-level talk since President Biden took office, Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin affirms to Defense Minister Kishi Nobuo that the Senkaku Islands fall within the scope of the Japan-US Mutual Security Treaty.

: The Standing Committee of China’s National People’s Congress adopts a law empowering the coast guard to take action, including the use of weapons, when national sovereignty, sovereign rights, or jurisdiction is “illegally” infringed on or threatened by foreign organizations or individuals at sea.

: Taiwan’s iconic Taipei 101 skyscraper begins displaying LED messages proclaiming the strong friendship between the peoples of Japan and Taiwan.

: Joint Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency (JAXA)-Taiwan Academia Sinica NKCU Institute of Space and Plasma Sciences team reports breakthroughs in energization and radiation in geospace with important implications about how electrons work at higher altitudes as well as communications and electrical systems on earth.

: At a virtual conference on maritime security, the director-general of the Japanese foreign ministry’s Asian and Oceanian Affairs Bureau protests Chinese ships’ activities around the Diaoyu/Senkaku islands.

: Statistics show China imports 22% of Japanese exports in 2020, surpassing the US at 18.4%.

: Report shows Japan’s increased engagement with Myanmar to counter Chinese dominance. Measures include support for education and health initiatives, negotiating peace between the Burmese military (Tatmadaw) and the Arakan Army insurgents, and financial contributions to the troubled $8 billion Dawei Special Economic Zone project.

: A Japanese research fellow at London’s International Institute for Strategic Studies advocates redefining Japanese and British efforts to meet their common challenge from China.

: Japan’s largest discount store Don Quijote opens first branch, known locally as Don Don Donki, in Taipei.

: Japanese government reportedly seeks to convince Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Co. to set up advanced manufacturing facilities in Japan to rejuvenate the country’s lagging chip industry and fending off competition from China.

: Japanese government plans to commercialize the mining of cobalt and other rare metals on the seabed near Minamitorishima, in the Ogasawara Islands.

: The Japanese government honors 90-year old Taiwanese librarian Liu Yao-tzu with its Order of the Rising Sun for his services in promoting cultural services between Japan and Taiwan.

: Official Chinese military newspaper Jiefangjun Bao criticize Japan’s draft military budget for developing multidomain combined combat capabilities with the US as breaking the boundaries of the country’s pacifist constitution.

: PRC’s Ministry of Industry and Information Technology announces that companies will be required to follow export control laws and regulations regarding the export and import of rare earth minerals.

: Japan Forward reprints report that the Japanese government is considering how to publicize mid-19th century British and German maps showing the Senkaku Islands as Japanese territory.

: Takeuchi Ryo, a Nanjing-based Japanese documentary film director, explains polls showing Japanese people’s negative impressions of China as the result of a significant number of programs smearing China on Japanese TV.

: Naha coast guard officials confirm the presence of four Chinese government ships in the contiguous zone off the contested Diaoyu/Senkaku Islands on Jan. 1.

: Commenting on Japanese interest in becoming the sixth eye of the Five Eyes alliance, a research associate at Fudan University’s Center for Japanese Studies opines that Japan is “strong in will but weak in capability,” but will continue to move closer to the alliance.

: Global Times terms fabricated “out of thin air” a report in center-left Mainichi Shimbun saying that Japanese elites have been inoculated with Chinese vaccines suspected to have been smuggled into Japan.

: Back-to-back articles in Yomiuri reveal that at least 44 Japanese researchers have been involved in China’s Thousand Talents Program to attract high-level scientists from overseas. Questioned about their motives, the scientists cite China’s more attractive research environment.

: Hong Kong’s South China Morning Post describes China’s strategy to wear down Japanese resistance to its claim over the Senkaku Islands through repeated air and sea incursions.

: Bracing for further advancements in China’s military and the rise of drone warfare, Japan begins to develop unmanned, remote-controlled fighter aircraft with the goal of having them operational by 2035.

: Japanese newspapers comment approvingly in response to reports that the frigate Hamburg will be dispatched to the Indo-Pacific out of concern for a rising China.

: Yomiuri, citing unnamed sources familiar with China-Russia relations, states that the two states have agreed to aim missiles at Japan or other US allies in Asia if the US deployed missiles in those nations.

: Sankei Shimbun discloses that research and development is being conducted on a new type of weapon akin to domestic Tomahawks. If deployed on the Nansei Islands, they could reach Pyongyang and Beijing.

: Global Times predicts that China’s third aircraft carrier, carrier-based stealth fighter jets, and a newly developed frigate with integrated propulsion system will be among the new weapons debuting in 2021 and that “there is no doubt that China will continue to develop new, world-class weapons for years to come.”

: State Minister of Defense Nakayama Yasuhide urges president-elect Biden to “be strong” in supporting Taiwan in the face of an aggressive China and quickly announce a policy on Taiwan so that Japan could prepare its response in accordance with it.

: Japanese bookseller Tsutaya opened the second of a planned 100 stores in China, which is experiencing a boom in bookstores.

: In response to increasing Chinese incursions, Japan reportedly will assign 22 coast guard ships of 1,000 tons or more to the East China Sea chain by 2023.

: Reacting to Japan’s 1.1% increase in the FY 2021 defense budget, leading Chinese military newspaper Jiefang Junbao criticizes Japan for “chanting” its defense only principle while introducing military equipment that would empty the principle.

: Global Times reprints Reuters’ report on the 1.1% increase in Japan’s fiscal year 2021 defense budget while omitting the Reuters’ phrases “to counter China’s growing military power,” against potential foes “including neighboring China.

: Japan and China sign a memorandum of understanding to create one of the world’s largest methane production facilities in northern China.

: Kishi says Japan will develop new standoff weapons and anti-ship missiles that can target warships at greater distances around the chain of southwestern Okinawa island chain, including near the Diaoyu/Senkaku Islands.

: Japanese exports to China rose 3.8% in November, weaker than the 10% rise in October, even as Japan’s exports as a whole declined by 4% from a year earlier.

: Xi’s failure to visit the Daming Temple during his November visit to Yangzhou is seen as a snub to Japan.

: Defense Minister Kishi Nobuo and Chinese counterpart Wei Fenghe take part in their first discussion, via telephone, since Kishi took office in September.

: China Daily, noting that the Chinese Center for Disease Control and Prevention has been working with Japan’s National Institute of Infectious Diseases, suggests that collaboration be expanded to prevent future outbreaks and emerging infectious diseases.

: Chen Xi, head of the CCP’s Organization Department and a Politburo member speaks at the seventh national memorial day for the victims of the Nanjing Massacre slaughtered by Japanese troops in 1937.

: Japanese defense ministry commissions a consultancy to help crucial defense subcontractors in danger of going out of business apply for tax incentives and subsidies.

: In his first press conference since being appointed ambassador to Beijing, Tarumi Hideo, despite being a member of the “China School” of the Japanese foreign ministry and ties to pro-China LDP secretary-general Nikai, calls China’s stance on the Diaoyu/Senkaku Islands “completely unacceptable.”

: Renmin Ribao cites Japanese opposition parties’ objection to building two ships equipped with Aegis missile interceptors as unconstitutional.

: In what Nikkei describes as an effort to offset Africa’s China tilt, FM Motegi leaves to visit Tunisia, Mozambique, South Africa, and Mauritius, where he emphasizes Tokyo’s more transparent business environment.

: Meeting at a trilateral forum, Japan and the US pledge to provide financial assistance to Vietnam for the construction of LNG-fired power plants as part of a plan to offset Chinese influence.

: Jiji reports that five young Taiwanese members of the Fukushima Zenshin-dan visited the tsunami-nuclear meltdown area of Fukushima, sponsored by the Taiwan Society of Tokyo.

: Reacting to Xi’s announcement that China would consider joining the CPTPP, a Yomiuri editorial expresses doubt that the PRC will submit to its rules and urges member nations to build a consensus to abide by them.

: According to Yomiuri, the Japanese government will replace over 1,000 of its drones “aimed from a national security standpoint at effectively eliminating Chinese-made units currently in use.

: Nikkei observes that active recruitment by the Chinese government has increased the trend of Japanese scientists taking jobs in China due to higher salaries and better research opportunities.

: Asahi predicts Xi’s long-awaited visit to Japan will not take place until 2022, perhaps on the 50th anniversary of the normalization of Sino-Japanese diplomatic relations.

: Nikkei reports that repeated Chinese incursions into the Diaoyu/Senkaku area was the key topic of the 20-minute meeting between Suga and visiting Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi. Wang replies that the islands should not stand in the way of advancing bilateral relations and that the two countries should work together on economic recovery and the pandemic.

: Wang’s discussions with Japanese Foreign Minister Motegi Toshimitsu result in agreement to establish a fast-lane travel corridor for essential personal exchanges by the end of November so as to facilitate the resumption of business activities.

: According to a private sector study commissioned by the defense ministry, the costs of building two additional Aegis class ships and their equipment will amount to about ¥500 billion, vis-à-vis the ¥400 billion cost of Aegis Ashore.

: Japanese diplomatic sources reveal that 2016 plans for a freedom of navigation operation in the South China Sea in response to Chinese pressure on the Diaoyu/Senkakus were called off because Abe feared it would jeopardize a visit by Xi.

: Mitsubishi Electric, which plays a major role in supporting Japan’s national security and infrastructure, is again targeted in a sophisticated cyberattack.

: Chinese authorities cancel the anti-Japanese war-themed drama series Leiting Zhanjiang (Lightning General) because of its “excessive entertainment factor.”

: As part of efforts to deter Chinese activities in and near its remote islands, the uninhabited island of Mageshima is to become an SDF base in addition to serving for field carrier landing practice for US carrier-borne aircraft.

: 8th century cultural treasures loaned to a Shanghai museum are returned to Toshodaiji temple which had lent them, enabling performance of a rite that the temple has performed annually for eight centuries without fail.

: Yomiuri notes that the Japanese government’s unwillingness to use the word “threat” when discussing China for fear of provoking the PRC has proved ineffective as a deterrent and advises augment “a military buildup that is firm enough not to give China the smallest opening to pounce upon.”

: Taking note of President-elect Biden’s commitment to applying Article 5 of the Japan-US Security Treaty to the Diaoyu/Senkaku islands, China’s leading military newspaper cautions Japan against allowing relations to deteriorate again due to “external factors.”

: Annual Japan-China opinion poll conducted by Japanese nonprofit think tank Genron NPO finds that 89.7% of Japanese respondents have an unfavorable or somewhat unfavorable impression of China.

: A new air freight route is launched linking Changsha, in central China, with Osaka.

: Japan signs the Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership (RCEP) pact, marking Japan’s first free trade agreement with both China and South Korea.

: An internal Japanese defense ministry document indicates that the alternative to the Aegis Ashore system that was scrapped a few months ago will cost 1.5 times as much.

: Japan’s Coast Guard is test-flying the US-made SeaGuardian drone, able to patrol a wider part of the Pacific and allow the coast guard to concentrate personnel and equipment in waters near the Diaoyu/Senkaku islands.

: Global Times accuses foreign media of “stirring up trouble” and avers that every country has the right to carry out activities in waters and airspace under its jurisdiction, including the use of force, pointedly accompanying its article with a photograph of a China Maritime Surveillance ship patrolling the Senkaku/Diaoyu islands.

: Yomiuri reports that the Japanese government has asked Beijing to suspend the illegal operations of Chinese fishing boats in and around the Yamato Bank area, which is part of Japan’s EEZ.

: China’s National People’s Congress posts draft legislation that empowers the coast guard to investigate and seize foreign ships venturing into territorial waters claimed by China, and to use weapons under certain conditions.

: As India, US, Japan, and Australia begin their largest naval exercises in more than a decade, Beijing complains of a “cold war mentality.”

: Chief Cabinet Secretary Kato Katsunobu terms the presence of Chinese ships in the contiguous zone off the Senkaku/Diaoyu islands for the 283rd day this year as “an extremely serious matter.”

: Sources say Tokyo’s Metropolitan Police Department will separate its China and North Korea operations in what seems a belated response to China’s 2017 requirement for its citizens to cooperate with the government’s espionage activities and repeated intrusions off the Senkaku/Diaoyu islands.

: Taking note of Xi’s plans for future development of the PRC’s economy, the Asahi Shimbun editorializes concern that China is aiming for a self-imposed isolation.

: Global Times reacts to a Kyodo dispatch that Japan’s Defense Ministry is mulling construction of what would be the MSDF’s largest destroyer by calling it an excuse to break through the limits of Japan’s peace constitution by hyping threats from neighboring countries.

: Global Times responds favorably to Suga’s first policy speech to the Diet since his inauguration interpreting his statement that a stable China-Japan relationship as indicative of a “mild” attitude, adding that recent rhetoric and moves that are not conducive to positive developments do not represent the whole picture of the Suga administration’s China policy.

: Xinhua describes Suga’s visits to Vietnam and Indonesia as an attempt to bring ASEAN into the Indo-Pacific framework being pushed by the US and Japan.

: Responding to the intrusion of an unusually large number of Chinese fishing boats into Japan’s Exclusive Economic Zone, the Japanese Fisheries Agency requests that Japanese boats avoid those areas, to the annoyance of the impacted fishermen.

: Suga, in Indonesia, emphasizes Japan’s commitment to the Free and Open Indo-Pacific, also endorsing the Jakarta-initiated ASEAN Outlook on the Indo-Pacific. Suga and Prime Minister Joko Widodo will work toward holding a second “two-plus-two” round of foreign and defense ministerial talks, Indonesia being the only ASEAN member with such a channel.

: US information security company Crowdstrike reveals that some Japanese research institutions developing coronavirus vaccines have been hit by cyberattacks, apparently from China.

: Yomiuri editorializes that, in light of large-scale acquisitions in Hokkaido and other areas in Japan by Chinese and Chinese-related companies, the government should move quickly on legislation to monitor the sale of land around SDF bases and on remote border islands.

: Global Times protests the ritual offering, referring to it as a “potted plant,” that Suga sent for the Yasukuni Shrine’s autumn festival.

: In a modest effort to enhance control over the Diaoyu/Senkaku Islands, Japan’s environment ministry reportedly will conduct a survey of the islands’ endangered species and overall ecology, using satellite imagery to avoid an actual physical presence there.

: Yomiuri Shimbun speculates that China’s recent intrusions into the area around the Diaoyu/Senkaku Islands was related to Japanese participation in the Quad, which  opposes Chinese expansionism. The article notes that the Standing Committee of China’s National People’s Congress has begun deliberations on the specific duties of the coast guard that could lead to an increase in provocative actions in the disputed waters in cooperation with the Chinese navy.

: A commentator for the Japan Times characterizes China’s recent intrusions into Japanese territorial waters as a test for Suga and a continuation of its policy of normalizing its presence in the area.

: Taiwan’s Legislative Yuan’s Friendship Association for the East Asian region officially invites Abe to give a speech to the LY next year.

: Miki House, purveyor of upscale children’s apparel, is targeting affluent customers in China and elsewhere in Asia as the Japanese birthrate declined, with 80% of its new shops having opened outside Japan since 2019.

: Japan launches the first of a new class of diesel-electric submarines, the Taigei (Big Whale), in a response to China’s military modernization and increasing assertiveness in the Indo-Pacific.

: Osaka police announce arrest of a former worker at a major Japanese chemical firm suspected of disclosing information to China on the manufacturing process of conductive particles which are used in smartphone touch panels.

: Chief Cabinet Secretary Kato Katsunobu “strictly protests” the entry of Chinese Coast Guard ships into disputed East China Sea waters for three days and their refusal to leave despite repeated warnings.

: A Global Times opinion piece describes the new generation of Japanese politicians as focused on cooperation with the US, Europe, and the Indo-Pacific strategy, with containment a core concern. China must be vigilant on where they will take Japan’s future policies.

: Three MSDF vessels conduct anti-submarine drills in the South China Sea. Japan’s Defense Ministry gives no details on the geographical location of the drills, but notes that the three vessels will stop in Vietnam, which contests part of the South China Sea with the PRC, “to replenish supplies.”

: Concerned about Chinese purchases of water sources and tracts of land (particularly those on remote islands and near Self-Defense Force bases), Japan’s government reportedly will establish a law to more closely monitor them.

: Earmarked in the Japanese government’s 2021 budget request is 6.2 billion yen ($60 million) to promote “workations,” combining work with vacation, on remote islands as a way to preserve the nation’s territory while also promoting tourism.

: Japan’s government lodges a diplomatic protest against China’s new 3-D museum.

: Speaking at a meeting of the Quad with Australia, India, and the US, Suga indicates that he will follow Abe’s strong commitment to a Free and Open Pacific (FOIP) to counter China’s growing assertiveness.

: Pew poll shows a rise in unfavorable views of China in 14 countries, including Japan, where 52% said their views were “very unfavorable” and 34% “somewhat unfavorable.”

: Chinese government announces the creation of a 3-D museum including archives and maps that reiterate Beijing’s claim to the disputed Diaoyu/Senkaku islands.

: Columnist for the Japan Times argued that Japan had spent too long on the defensive, and must frustrate China’s strategy of incrementally altering the status quo without incurring substantive costs.

: Nikkei editorializes that Suga obtain the understanding of the Japanese people before trying to improve relations with China.

: Nikkei’s Beijing correspondent interprets Renmin Ribao’s prominent coverage of Xi’s phone call with Angolan President Joao Lourenco vis-à-vis its treatment of his call with Suga as a message to Japan that it will not receive preferential treatment from the PRC. Xi was number seven on Suga’s call list.

: Suga and Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi agree to elevate their special strategic and global partnership and step up cooperation in security and economic efforts in support of a “free and open Indo-Pacific,” with the US and Australia, code language for opposition to Chinese assertiveness in the area.

: Xinhua reports that, in a telephone call with Suga, Xi Jinping said that China stands ready to work with Suga’s government to properly handle key sensitive issues and that China supports Japan in hosting a successful Olympic games next year.

: The Japanese defense industry advocates deploying a missile-defense system on a floating platform that will use the radar and other equipment from the abandoned land-based Aegis Ashore project.

: Reviewing the fifth anniversary of the enactment of a set of new security laws, Yomiuri assesses that they have strengthened the US-Japan alliance against China’s maritime push and North Korea’s nuclear and missile development programs.

: China expresses concern with Suga’s appointment of Kishi Nobuo, a friend of Taiwan, as defense minister, with PRC foreign ministry spokesperson expressing China’s hope that “the Japanese side will abide by the ‘One China’ principle and refrain from any form of official exchanges with the Taiwan region.”

: Former Prime Minister Abe Shinzo tweets that he visited Yasukuni Shrine after resigning to report his resignation to the souls of the war dead. This was Abe’s first physical visit to the shrine since 2013.

: Global Times reports that Abe’s visit to Yasukuni was “blasted” on social media, which it says shows that rightwing politicians have yet to reflect on their country’s war crimes even as they try to be friendly with China, and predicts that Abe’s visit will set a bad example for Suga.

: Former Prime Minister Mori Yoshiro attends a memorial service for former Taiwan President Lee Teng-hui. He evades questions about Taiwan and Japan developing security cooperation in the face of China’s military intimidation, but says that Suga had called him to express hope of talking with President Tsai Ing-wen “if there were an opportunity.” Both sides declare that there are no plans for such a conversation.

: Speaking just two days after Suga’s election, one of his major backers, LDP heavyweight and China-friendly Nikai Toshihiro, voices hope that Xi Jinping’s state visit will take place soon and that a fifth political document will establish China-Japan intentions for “co-creation to achieve world peace and prosperity led by Japan and China together.”

: China Daily predicts that Suga will try to further improve relations with China but at the same time take a tough stance in defense and security policies.

: Global Times editorializes that the question of whether Suga’s attitude will be better is “insignificant,” and that China should continue to boost its attractiveness to Japan, weaken Japan’s ability to restrict China’s development, and gradually suppress Japan’s idea of taking an opportunistic line toward China.

: Debating with contenders for the presidency of the Liberal Democratic Party (LDP) and the prime ministership, front-runner Suga Yoshihide vows that, if elected, he would stand his ground with Beijing.

: Chinese specialists on Japan dismiss Suga and other candidates’ remarks as campaign rhetoric, opining that no leader would abandon the benefits achieved during the past few years, especially those relating to the economy and trade.

: India and Japan sign a pact for reciprocal provision of supplies and services between their armed forces, seen as strengthening Quad—with Australia and the US—efforts to contain China’s influence in the Indo-Pacific.

: Yomiuri reports that, due to China’s continued provocations in areas surrounding Japan despite the pandemic, Japanese Ground Self-Defense units have been conducting large-scale drills in Nagasaki and Hokkaido prefectures to prepare for the defense on remote islands. A record number of 17,000 personnel participated in the Hokkaido exercises.

: Speaking at think tank in Washington, then-Defense Minister Kono Taro explains that although as foreign minister he referred to China as a grave concern, as defense minister, he must say that China is a security threat to Japan.

: Disclosing hitherto unknown details of secret negotiations involving a Chinese fishing boat ramming two Japanese Coast Guard vessels a decade ago, Nikkei comments that China’s unwillingness to compromise means that “Japan once again faces the question of whether it is ready to tackle big issues regarding its powerful neighbor—and at what cost.”

: China Daily reports on the opening in Heilongjiang of a major exhibition related to the War of Resistance Against Japanese Aggression that it says presents mainly new evidence of Japan’s human experiments and biochemical weapons.

: Global Times describes China’s commemoration of the 75th Anniversary of the victory of the Chinese people’s War of Resistance Against Japanese Aggression as low-key, which it attributes to improving China-Japan relations.

: Japan, Australia, and India agree to diversify supply chains away from China, a major trading partner for all three.

:  Japanese brokerage house Daiwa Securities Group announces that it will set up a joint venture, Daiwa Securities (China) with $146 million in capital. It will be 51% owned by Daiwa, 33% an investment company owned by the city of Beijing, and 16% by Beijing Xicheng Capital Holdings.

: Yomiuri reports that Japan is seeking to reduce security risks inherent in its dependence on China by establishing a supply chain network that combines Japan’s technological capabilities with Australia’s natural resources and Indian information technology, with the participation of the Association of Southeast Asian states.

:  Xinhua reports matter-of-factly on the sudden resignation of Abe due to illness, while Global Times observes that, since stable relations with China was vital to the Japanese economy, his successor would likely continue Abe’s policies.

:  Japan Oil, Gas, and Metals National Corporation announces successful excavation of rare metals from inside the seabed of Japan’s EEZ, describing it as an important step in Japan’s plans to reduce its reliance on China for these commodities.

:  Referencing a virtual summit between the Indian and Japanese prime ministers in early September, a research director at Tsinghua University opines that India’s anticipated effort to “rope Japan into” an effort to suppress China is doomed to fail because Tokyo needs stable economic relations with Beijing in the post-pandemic era.

: China Daily runs a mildly critical article on the memorial service headlined “War End Anniversary Sees No Abe Apology.” The unnamed author advised Japanese policymakers to “recognize the status quo and thus explore the potential of bilateral relations more boldly and aggressively to find new growth policies for economic cooperation with China.”

: In response to news that Abe visited a hospital for a health check-up, Global Times opines that the Japanese economy, having suffered a 27.8 % contraction in the last quarter, also needed a check-up.

: Local Chinese authorities reportedly instruct fishermen not to sail within 30 nautical miles of the Diaoyu/Senkakus, possibly as a hedge against worsening relations with the US.

: In a government memorial service for the war dead, Abe does not mention  “taking the lessons of history deeply into our hearts,” which has been standard since then Prime Minister Murayama Tomiichi first included it in 1995.

: Four Cabinet ministers visit the Yasukuni Shrine on the anniversary of Japan’s defeat in World War II, the first such Cabinet-level visit since 2016 when two ministers attended. Abe does not, but sends a representative who paid for a ritual offering of the sacred sakaki tree. Uncharacteristically, Xinhua barely mentions the visit.

: Kono states that unspecified members of the Five Eyes intelligence sharing consortium are seeking closer cooperation with Japan in response to China’s growing military expansion but opines that he does not think Japan needs to in the formal sense.

: A rally of support for Chow takes place in Tokyo.

: Due to concern that China is siphoning off advanced technological information in the name of joint research, legislation on a certification system for those handling such data will be submitted to next year’s Diet session. Japan is the only G7 member lacking such a certification system.

: Japanese government boosts its stockpile of rare metals to reduce its dependence on China which, despite earlier efforts, still accounted for 58% of rare earth imports in 2018.

: A Nikkei survey reveals that in 2019 China surpassed Japan in 12 hi-tech markets and in now and second only to the United States.

:  Tweets with the hashtag “FreeAgnes” go viral in Japan in response to activist Agnes Chow’s arrest in Hong Kong for violating the new national security law, with more than 290,000 messages posted under it.

:  A delegation led by former Prime Minister Mori Yoshihiro visits Taiwan to pay respects to Lee, meeting with President Tsai as well. Mori conveyed to her Abe’s “heartfelt gratitude for Lee’s guidance for Japan.”

: Reacting to news that Tokyo would welcome an invitation to join the Five Eyes (FVEY) intelligence alliance, Chinese expert on Japanese issues Liu Junhong attributes Tokyo’s interest to its mistrust of China “despite bilateral relations being generally positive in the last two years.”

:  Defense Minister Kono warns China that the SDF and Japanese Coast Guard will respond to intrusions around the Diaoyu(tai)/Senkaku Islands, declining to elaborate on what such actions might entail.

:  According to a Japanese industry ministry source, China’s recent showering of praise on Japanese companies seems part of a campaign to build a supply chain that cannot be blocked by Washington.

: All major Japanese newspapers carry obituary of Taiwan’s former President Lee Teng-hui, mentioning his impressive knowledge of Japan. Prime Minister Abe Shinzo praises Lee for contributing to enhancing Japan and Taiwan’s bilateral relations and for promulgating freedom and democracy in Taiwan.

: In the first explicit commitment to help address recent Chinese encroachment in the waters around the contested Diaoyu/Senkaku Islands, Lt. Gen Kevin Schneider, commander of American forces in Japan, says that “the United States is 100% absolutely steadfast in its commitment to help the government of Japan with the situation … that’s 365 days a year, 24 hours a day, seven days a week.”

:  In what Nikkei describes as a snub to China, the Chilean government chooses Japan’s trans-Pacific fiber-optic cable route in preference to China’s. When completed, the cable will be the first to directly connect South America with the Asia-Pacific.

:  Reflecting what an anonymous Japanese Coast Guard source describes as his government’s “sense of crisis,” the JCG deploys three large patrol vessels of 3,500 to 6,500 tons in Okinawa and Kagoshima prefectures.

: Sankei Shimbun reports that NTT DoCoMo, Japan’s largest mobile phone operator, is heading a movement to bring together different countries to build a low-cost communication network without Huawei technology.

: A consortium of Japanese companies bests China in a bid to build a $2 billion liquified natural gas-fired power plant in Myanmar, with a projected capacity of about 20 percent of the country’s existing power plants. Myanmar, with access to the Indian Ocean, is a key part of China’s Belt and Road Initiative, with Chinese companies having secured the rights to a similar-sized power plant in 2018.

: Chinese government ships sail into waters surrounding the Diaoyu/Senkaku Islands for the 100th straight day.

: Japanese government protests to Beijing over a Chinese maritime scientific survey ship that operated for 10 days inside the EEZ claimed by Japan around Okinotori.

: The Japanese government will invite Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Company (TSMC) to take part in joint projects in Japan, in response to a potential threat from China’s efforts to build systems to enable its companies to produce finished products, including semiconductors, all on their own.

: Japan’s Ministry of Economy, Trade, and Industry announces first tranche of companies eligible for “China exit subsidies;” 87 companies will receive a total of $653 million.

:  In a move that symbolizes the Japanese government’s hope for warmer ties with the PRC, Tarumi Yoshio, a member of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs’ China School, is appointed ambassador to the PRC. Tarumi is close to LDP Secretary-General Nikai Toshihiro, who is known for his pro-China views.

: In an interview with Nikkei, Taiwan’s Audrey Tang warns Japan that putting China’s equipment in its core telecom infrastructure is akin to inviting a Trojan horse into the network.

:  Japan’s Ministry of Defense releases its 2020 White Paper, accusing China, inter alia, of unilateral attempts to change the status quo by coercion, lack of transparency in its defense budget and enhancing its capabilities in space, cyberspace, and the electromagnetic spectrum, leading to “a situation of grave concern.”

:  Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesperson describes the Defense of Japan 2020 White Paper as fraught with bias against China and false information, while providing no details.

: Yomiuri editorializes on the importance of countries like Japan, the US, and Australia to support ASEAN in its concern for freedom of navigation in the South China Sea through such mechanisms as the RIMPAC naval exercise. Yomiuri also expresses concern about the increasing number of Chinese planes making threatening flights around Taiwan.

: Xinhua reports on a joint statement by Japanese civil groups to commemorate the 83rd anniversary of the outbreak of hostilities at Marco Polo Bridge in 1987.

: Kyodo reports that two Chinese Coast Guard vessels stayed in the territorial waters of the Senkaku/Diaoyu(tai) Islands for 39 hours and 23 minutes, longer than the 30 hours 17 minutes recorded on July 3, over which the Japanese government issued a protest.

: An unusually long article  in Kyodo covers Taipei City’s celebration of Japan’s contribution to Taiwan’s tap water centered around the premiere of a documentary film, Tracing Roots, that focuses on the country’s transformation during the Japanese colonial period.

: Chinese foreign ministry spokesman Zhou Lijiang responds to an LDP draft resolution criticizing China for its new security law for Hong Kong by saying the statements “are meaningless and I do not have the time or interest to deal with them.”

:  Japan’s passes revised state secrets law that allows exchanges with partners such as India, Australia, and the UK as well as existing exchange with the US, making it easier to share data on Chinese movements. It also allows Japan to exercise its right to collective self-defense and supply fuel and ammunition to other militaries in situations that pose a threat to Japan.

: Chief Cabinet Secretary Suga says that China’s imposition of  a national security law for Hong Kong is “regrettable,” particularly after strong concern expressed by the international community, and that his government will continue to appropriately address the issue with the countries involved.

:  Taiwan’s widely read anti-unification Liberty Times points out that all the protestors to Ishigaki’s changes to the names of disputed areas were from the opposition KMT and accused the party of seizing on the issue to divert attention from its poor approval ratings.

:  Kono explains his decision to identify a submarine that ventured near Japanese territorial waters as Chinese as necessary to raise awareness.

:  Xinhua reports without editorial comment Japan’s decision to end its Aegis Ashore program, quoting Japanese official sources on the high cost of the project.

: Defense Minister Kono Taro, after taking the unusual step of naming China as the probable owner of the submarine that passed through Japan’s contiguous zone announces that the government had heightened vigilance against  Chinese incursions.

: Yomiuri describes urgent need for discussions on how to respond to China’s development of hypersonic missiles that is pushing the US-Japan alliance to a turning point and must be addressed in negotiations on burden sharing.

: Both China and Taiwan protest a vote by the Okinawa city council of change the administrative status of the disputed Diaoyu/Senkaku islands from “Tonoshiro” to “Tonoshiro Senkaku,” purportedly to avoid confusion with another area of Ishigaki, which administers the islands.

: Wall Street Journal reports that, after helping to organize a statement critical of China’s actions in Hong Kong, the Japanese government is encouraging Hong Kong financial professionals to move to Tokyo.

: Da Zhigang, director of Heilongjiang’s Institute of Northeast Asian Studies, opines that Japan is unlikely to permanently abandon the Aegis Ashore system but if awaiting an opportune time to restart the deployment.

:  A submarine, presumed but not specifically identified as Chinese, passes through the contiguous zone off the cost of Amami-Oshima island in southern Japan, the first such incident since January 2018.

: Chinese ships operate in the contiguous zone to the contested Diaoyu/Senkaku islands for the 65th day, surpassing the previous record of 64 in 2019.

: Several dozen Taiwanese protest outside the Taipei office of the Japan-Taiwan Exchange Association after reports that Okinawa’s Ishigaki City, which administers the disputed Senkaku/Diaoyu(tai) Islands, is planning to change the administrative designation of the islands from Tonoshiro to Tonoshiro Senkaku.

:  Yomiuri comments that a revised Foreign Exchange and Foreign Trade Law identifies 558 companies in 12 sectors as particularly important for national security, and requires all foreign investors seeking to acquire more than 1% in and of them to notify the government in advance.

: The conservative Japan Forward urges that Japan stop ignoring its, and Asia’s, China problem, suggesting a joint operational headquarters in Japan where US and Japanese forces could coordinate the defense of Northeast Asia, consider Taiwan’s defense part of its mandate, and increase defense spending by 10% for the next five years.

: LDP Diet members call on the government to vigorously protest China’s repeated stalking of Japanese fishing boats in waters near the disputed Senkaku/Diaoyu islands and again urge the government to carefully reconsider a visit by Xi.

: Motegi says in a television interview that Xi’s visit would not take place until after the G20 summit slated for November, and a major factor is China’s National People’s Congress passage of draconian security legislation for Hong Kong.

: Criticizing Japan’s reluctance to join other democracies in denouncing PRC legislation on Hong Kong, a Kyorin University professor emeritus accused his country of “judo diplomacy.”

:  A commentary in Japan Times takes note of a May 8-May 10 standoff between the Japanese Coast Guard (JCG) and two Chinese Coast Guard (CCG) ships in waters around the disputed Senkaku (Diaoyu) Islands as the CCG pursued a Japanese fishing boat.

: Asahi notes Japan’s struggle to cooperate with China in the economic sector while strengthening its defense alliance with the US.

: Foreign Minister Motegi Toshimitsu addresses  China’s National People’s Congress passing a draconian national security law that would affect Hong Kong’s freedoms, saying that he had had his deputy call in the Chinese ambassador to express Japan’s concern.

:  A document delivered to Chief Cabinet Secretary Suga by two LDP foreign policy panels urges reconsideration of plans for a state visit by Xi Jinping due to “grave and serious concern from the standpoint of respecting freedom and democracy.”

: Asahi’s lead editorial is entitled “Taiwan’s Success in Containing the Virus Should Be a Lesson Passed On.”

: Global Times warns Japan that, if it wants to maintain sound economic and trade relations with China, it had better not side with the US as Australia has.

: Japan Airlines evacuates Taiwanese who had been stranded in Russia for two months due to the pandemic, re-routing a flight from Helsinki to stop in Moscow to pick them up.

:  Japanese newspapers react negatively to the 6.6% increase in the PRC’s announced military budget, with Asahi asking when China will stop its aggressive military buildup “that exacerbates global security risks” and Nikkei describing the increase despite falling revenue as reflecting an “aggressive diplomatic posture.”

: China Daily reports on close work between Chinese and Japanese ornithologists to save the crested ibis from extermination, emphasizing the need for “people to put aside their conflicts and pursue a common goal.”

: Several Japanese newspapers report that a draft of the Japanese defense ministry’s annual white paper may accuse China of spreading false information about the coronavirus outbreak in order to bolster its geographic influence.

: Chief Cabinet Secretary Suga Yoshihide congratulated Tsai Ing-wen on her inauguration, using her formal title of president, eliciting protest from China.

:  A security expert interviewed by Asahistates that China’s approximately 2000 intermediate-range missiles can reach anywhere in Japan, while the US, because it signed the now-expired Intermediate Range Nuclear Forces Treaty with Russia, has none.

:  Mitsubishi Electric reports that a cyberattack last year “likely” leaked information on the hypersonic glide missile provided by the Japanese Defense Ministry’s Acquisition, Technology, and Logistics Agency (ATLA), for purposes of bidding on a contract to develop them.

:  Global Times calls Japan’s 2020 Diplomatic Blue Book, which, for the first time voices support for Taiwan’s observer status in the World Health Assembly, a “hypocritical move.”

: Japan’s Ground Self-Defense Force reportedly receives its first new rifles in 31 years to assist it in defending the Nansei (southwestern) Islands against increasing Chinese pressure.

: A retired senior colonel from the PLA’s Academy of Military Science construes Japan’s call for Rim of the Pacific (RIMPAC) 2020 military exercises to be held on schedule as indicative of its desire to expand its influence in the area.

: In Global Times, director of Northeast Asian Studies at the Heilongjiang Academy of Social Sciences notes that while Japan is reducing industrial plans in China and encouraging industries to relocate back to Japan, it has also signed the Comprehensive and Progressive Agreement for Trans-Pacific Trade, promoted the China-led Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership, and is an active partner in the China-Japan, South Korea Free Trade Agreement.

: Yomiuri quotes a member of the National Security Secretariat as saying that unless the country nurtured new technologies it would not have any technologies left to protect.

: Yomiuri reports on a 2019 Chinese language document that enumerates 63 industrial technologies not possessed by China and the names of foreign companies and research  institutes that possess them, including Japanese semiconductor materials and carbon fibers.

: Although dismissive of Japan’s stimulus package for subsidies to businesses to move production back to Japan, Beijing is sufficiently concerned to press Japanese authorities to explain the meaning of the measure and poll Japanese businesses in China on whether they plan to leave.

: Center-right Yomiuri Shimbun publishes interview with former Renmin Ribao commentator Ma Licheng in which Ma repeats his past calls for reconciliation with China.

: Noting the implications of 5G telecommunications technology for warfare, and China’s push to dominate the underseas cable industry, Yomiuri urges Japan to act swiftly to ensure the safety of its information and communications systems.

: Eager to get its economy back to normal, the Chinese government proposes easing its travel ban in anticipation of large numbers of Japanese tourists, assuming that the number of new cases declines.

: The Japanese government announces more stringent regulations on foreign investment in 518 firms it identifies as having operations critical to national security.

: Two of four China Coast Guard vessels in waters around the contested Senkaku Islands approached and chased a Japanese fishing boat, resulting in an immediate protest to the Chinese embassy in Tokyo.

: Pentagon announces deployment of four B-1 bombers to Guam on a “strategic deterrence mission.”

: Yomiuri editorial expresses concern that the PRC is exploiting the pandemic to escalate tensions in the South China Sea.

: Yomiuri editorial expresses concern that the PRC is exploiting the pandemic to escalate tensions in the South China Sea.

: Asahi criticizes the Ground Self-Defense Force’s highly-touted preparations for defending remote islands from Chinese encroachment, noting that the camp on Miyakojima still has no missiles or ammunition depots.

: South Korea and China agree to start some business travel under a “fast-track” immigration arrangement.

: Asahi criticizes the Ground Self-Defense Force’s highly-touted preparations for defending remote islands from Chinese encroachment, noting that the camp on Miyakojima still has no missiles or ammunition depots.

: US Department of Commerce announces new rules to tighten exports of certain sensitive technologies to China.

: US Department of Defense authorizes release of three videos of unidentified aerial phenomena to “clear up any misconceptions,” about videos already circulating.

: Australian government launches coronavirus tracing app, using Bluetooth to log when people are close to each other, enabling health officials to trace people potentially exposed to the illness.

: G20 health ministers online meeting; draft statement “scuppered” by US over positive references to WHO.

: China’s space agency names its first Mars exploration mission Tianwen-1, which is expected to be launched this year.

: Virtual US-ASEAN ministerial meeting is conducted, but the joint statement is reportedly delayed by disagreement over reference to China’s handling of the pandemic.

: Trump announces 60-day suspension of immigration into the US, to ensure US workers are first to get jobs.

: Australian frigate HMAS Parramatta joins three US warships in the South China Sea near an area Chinese vessels are suspected of exploring for oil.

: Daily NK, a Seoul-based online journal run by activists and defectors with sources inside North Korea, alleges that Kim Jong Un is recovering from a medical procedure, setting off international speculation about the North Korean leader’s well-being.

: Australian Foreign Minister Marise Payne calls for independent inquiry into the coronavirus outbreak and how it developed and spread.

: UN report finds that North Korea evaded international sanction and has raised millions of dollars through hacking and smuggling.

: USAF ends 16-year Continuous Bomber Presence on Guam.

: Nikkei cites Chinese economic sources expressing concerns about the Japanese government’s subsidies for relocating supply chains outside China, and worrying that other foreign companies may be incentivized to do the same.

: G7 leaders call for a review and reform of the World Health Organization.

: North Korean defector Thae Yong-ho, running with the conservative opposition party, wins a South Korean National Assembly seat despite a ruling party landslide.

: Nikkei cites Chinese economic sources expressing concerns about the Japanese government’s subsidies for relocating supply chains outside China, and worrying that other foreign companies may be incentivized to do the same.

: US State Department report speculates that China secretly set off low-level underground nuclear test explosions.

: North Korea celebrates the Day of the Sun, national founder Kim Il Sung’s birth anniversary. Kim Jong Un does not attend.

: North Korea test-fires short-range cruise missiles.

: ASEAN and ASEAN Plus Three Summit on the COVID-19 coronavirus are conducted via video conference.

: Trump announces the US will halt funding to the WHO while investigating its mismanagement of the coronavirus response.

: Chinese automakers ramp up production in Myanmar in a challenge to dominant entrenched Japanese rivals in the fast-growing market there.

: A Global Times editorial accuses Japan’s YomiuriShimbun of bias against China after its Beijing bureau chief wrote that the PRC should be held responsible for the coronavirus outbreak.

: Chinese automakers ramp up production in Myanmar in a challenge to dominant entrenched Japanese rivals in the fast-growing market there.

: A Global Times editorial accuses Japan’s YomiuriShimbun of bias against China after its Beijing bureau chief wrote that the PRC should be held responsible for the coronavirus outbreak.

: Chinese government lodges a protest against an exchange of tweets between Abe and Tsai Ing-wen in which they pledged to join hands to overcome the coronavirus threat.

: Japan’s Ministry of Defense reveals that a five-ship Chinese carrier defense force transited the Miyako Strait toward the Philippine Sea.

: Chinese government lodges a protest against an exchange of tweets between Abe and Tsai Ing-wen in which they pledged to join hands to overcome the coronavirus threat.

: Japan’s Ministry of Defense reveals that a five-ship Chinese carrier defense force transited the Miyako Strait toward the Philippine Sea.

: Philippines Department of Foreign Affairs expresses solidarity with Vietnam after protests over the sinking of a Vietnamese fishing boat by China in the disputed South China Sea.

: Abe approves an economic stimulus package worth about $1 trillion and plans direct payments to households and businesses in coronavirus emergency.

: China is appointed to a panel on the UN Human Rights Council, serving as representative of Asia-Pacific states.

: Vietnam protests China’s of sinking a Vietnamese fishing boat near the Paracel Islands in the South China Sea.

: Nikkei  editorializes that countries should be wary of the CCP’s strategic penetration of the leadership of international organizations.

: Nikkei editorializes that countries should be wary of the CCP’s strategic penetration of the leadership of international organizations.

: Taiwanese app that tracks inventories of face masks praise in the Japanese media, suggesting that Japan should learn from Taiwan’s use of technology for crisis management.

: Taiwanese app that tracks inventories of face masks praise in the Japanese media, suggesting that Japan should learn from Taiwan’s use of technology for crisis management.

:   Japanese destroyer Shimakaze and a Chinese fishing boat collide  in the East China  Sea  about 400 miles west of Yakushima, with one  fisherman reportedly injured.

: Japanese destroyer Shimakaze and a Chinese fishing boat collide in the East China Sea about 400 miles west of Yakushima, with one fisherman reportedly injured.

: Nikkei reports that China is aggressively courting Japanese companies to gain access to their Internet of Things knowledge in manufacturing.

: Nikkei reports that China is aggressively courting Japanese companies to gain access to their Internet of Things knowledge in manufacturing.

: Japanese government will provide an estimated ¥ 200 billion in subsidies for companies that move their production bases from the PRC to Japan and Southeast Asian countries.

: North Korea launches two short-range ballistic missiles.

: Japanese government will provide an estimated ¥ 200 billion in subsidies for companies that move their production bases from the PRC to Japan and Southeast Asian countries.

: Kyodo reports that Yuan Keqing, a prominent Chinese scholar at Hokkaido University who disappeared while visiting his mother’s funeral in China in mid-June, has been charged with espionage.

: Trump signs the TAIPEI (Taiwan Allies International Protection and Enhancement Initiative) Act into law.

: Kyodo reports that Yuan Keqing, a prominent Chinese scholar at Hokkaido University who disappeared while visiting his mother’s funeral in China in mid-June, has been charged with espionage.

: A Shenyang congee restaurant that hung a large banner over its door “welcoming” the coronavirus to the US and hoping it will remain in Japan for a long time is sharply criticized on Japanese social media. The restaurant later apologizes and takes down the banner. Global Times reports that the owner of the chain has fired the local manager.

: Chinese website China Military Online opines  that Japan’s motive in selling the J/FPS-3 air defense radar to the Philippines is to fill the void created by the US military’s withdrawal from Asia and to expand its international diplomatic presence.

: G7 virtual ministerial meeting fails to issue a joint communique, reportedly over Pompeo’s insistence on including reference to the “Wuhan virus.”

: Secretary of Defense Mark Esper signs order freezing the movement of US military personnel for 60 days over concerns from the coronavirus pandemic.

: G7 Foreign Ministers’ Meeting is held via video conference call, attended by the US, Italy, France, Canada, Germany, the United Kingdom, Japan, and the EU High Representative for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy.

: Chinese website China Military Online opines that Japan’s motive in selling the J/FPS-3 air defense radar to the Philippines is to fill the void created by the US military’s withdrawal from Asia and to expand its international diplomatic presence.

: A Shenyang congee restaurant that hung  a large banner over its door “welcoming” the coronavirus to the US and hoping it  will  remain in  Japan for a long time is sharply criticized on Japanese social media. The restaurant later apologizes and takes down the banner. Global Times reports that the owner of the chain has fired the local manager.

: Abe and International Olympic Committee President Thomas Bach agree to reschedule the Olympics for the summer of 2021 at the latest.

: Modi orders nationwide lockdown in India, including a shutdown of all nonessential government offices and private businesses, and for all Indians to remain at home.

: Japan attempts to persuade more Asian states to join the Trans-Pacific Partnership since COVID-19 exposed the risks of supply chains that are overly dependent on China.

: South Korea’s armed forces track two North Korean short-range ballistic missiles launched into the Sea of Japan.

: Japan attempts to persuade more Asian states to join the Trans-Pacific Partnership since COVID-19 exposed the risks of supply chains that are overly dependent on China.

: In a further move toward cooperation with the US military against China, the MSDF commissions the Maya, its first ship equipped with the Cooperative Engagement Capability, allowing allies to instantly share the location of enemy missiles and aircraft.

: Indonesian and Malaysian foreign ministers discuss virtual cooperation and collaboration amid COVID-19 pandemic.

: North Korea test-fires two short-range ballistic missiles.

: In a further move toward cooperation with the US military against China, the MSDF commissions the Maya, its first ship equipped with the Cooperative Engagement Capability, allowing allies to instantly share the location of enemy missiles and aircraft.

:   After clinical trials in Wuhan and Shenzhen, China approves Fujifilm Holdings’ Avigan (Favipiravir) for treatment of COVID-19 even as doubts remain in Japan about its effectiveness.

: Chinese Ministry of Foreign Affairs announces that it will revoke press credentials of Americans working for The Wall Street Journal, the New York Times, and the Washington Post.

: China reports zero new local infections of COVID-19.

: After clinical trials in Wuhan and Shenzhen, China approves Fujifilm Holdings’ Avigan (Favipiravir) for treatment of COVID-19 even as doubts remain in Japan about its effectiveness.

: China and Cambodia participate in third annual Golden Dragon exercise in Cambodia’s Kampot province, focusing on counter-terrorism and humanitarianism.

: Chinese Ministry of Foreign Affairs spokesperson, Lijian Zhao implies on Twitter that US military brought coronavirus to Wuhan.

: WHO officially labels COVID-19 outbreak a pandemic.

: Trump announces measures to tackle COVID-19, including by suspending most travel from Europe.

: Editor of conservative Japanese monthly Seiron advocates creation of a suprapartisan advisory body modeled on the United States Economic and Security Review Commission.

: Editor of conservative Japanese monthly Seiron advocates creation of a suprapartisan advisory body modeled on the United States Economic and Security Review Commission.

: North Korea launches three short-range projectiles.

: US defense contractor Lockheed Martin temporarily suspends production of fifth-generation Lightning II F-35Astealth fighter aircraft at a facility in Nagoya over coronavirus concerns.

: Yomiuri, stating that the decision to postpone Xi’s visit was partly due to domestic opposition, urges  China to take steps to improve Japanese sentiment toward China in order to ensure the success of a visit.

: Yomiuri, stating that the decision to postpone Xi’s visit was partly due to domestic opposition, urges China to take steps to improve Japanese sentiment toward China in order to ensure the success of a visit.

: Xi Jinping’s visit to Japan is postponed, presumably until fall, with Chief Cabinet Secretary Suga Yoshihide explaining that “it is necessary to make thorough preparations for [Xi’s] state visit in order to achieve sufficient results.”

: Xi Jinping’s visit to Japan is postponed, presumably until fall, with Chief Cabinet Secretary Suga Yoshihide explaining that “it is necessary to make thorough preparations for [Xi’s] state visit in order to achieve sufficient results.”

: President Trump and the US skip the virtual vaccine summit hosted by EU.

: Chinese research scientists allege that their research shows the new coronavirus evolved into two strains.

: US imposes restrictions on the number of Chinese state-owned media employees allowed to work in the US.

: North Korea fires what appears to be two short-range ballistic missiles into the East Sea. China’s foreign ministry calls for dialogue.

: US Department of Justice announces charges against two Chinese nationals for money laundering conspiracy and operating an unlicensed money transmitting business. The defendants, Tian Yinyin and Li Jiadong, allegedly laundering “more than $100 million in cryptocurrency that had been stolen by ‘North Korean actors.’”

: South Korea’s Joint Chiefs of Staff reports that North Korea launched two short-range ballistic missiles into the Sea of Japan.

: Toyota announces it will build a new $1.22 billion electric vehicle plant in Tianjin with local partner FAW as well as expand its EV manufacturing in Guangzhou with another partner, the GAC Group.

: Toyota announces it will build a new $1.22 billion electric vehicle plant in Tianjin with local partner FAW as well as expand its EV manufacturing in Guangzhou with another partner, the GAC Group.

: Malaysia names Muhyiddin Yassin prime minister.

: US elevates warnings against travel to regions in Italy and South Korea.

: US and South Korea decide to postpone joint military exercises over coronavirus concerns.

: New Zealand Prime Minister Jacinda Arden meets Australian Prime Minister Scott Morrison in Sydney, where she criticizes Australia’s policy of forcible deportations of New Zealand citizens.

: Citing sources in the Japanese Ministry of Defense, UPI reports that the Japanese military plans to introduce a hypervelocity gliding projectile that is specifically designed to penetrate the deck of an aircraft carrier.

: Plans to deduct 5,000 yen ($45) from the salary of each LDP Diet member for coronavirus relief in China are modified into voluntary contributions after complaints from conservatives.

: New Zealand Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern meets Fijian Prime Minister Frank Bainimarama in Suva, Fiji.

: Indonesian House of Representative commission on defense, intelligence, and foreign affairs approves previous defense arrangements between Indonesia and the United States, including “a plan for the navy to receive up to 14 ScanEagleunmanned aerial vehicles and upgrades for three Bell 412 helicopters from the U.S. government.”

: Citing sources in the Japanese Ministry of Defense, UPI reports that the Japanese military plans to introduce a hypervelocity gliding projectile that is specifically designed to penetrate the deck of an aircraft carrier.

: Plans to deduct 5,000 yen ($45) from the salary of each LDP Diet member for coronavirus relief in China are modified into voluntary contributions after complaints from conservatives.

: US Defense Secretary Mark Esper says that South Korea should contribute more financially to its own defense.

: Thailand, the US, Singapore, Japan, Indonesia, Malaysia, and South Korea participate in Exercise Cobra Gold 2020. Cobra Gold focuses on “humanitarian civic action, a cyber exercise, an amphibious assault exercise, a humanitarian assistance and disaster relief exercise, culminating in the combined arms live fire exercise.”

: Malaysia’s king installs Mahathir Mohamad as interim prime minister following his shock resignation.

: President Trump and Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi meet in Ahmedabad, India.

: Center-right  Sankei Shimbun editorializes against Chinese provocations against the Senkakus and Taiwan, terming them particularly insensitive at a time when the PRC should be cooperating with the international community to prevent the spread of COVID-19.

: Center-right Sankei Shimbun editorializes against Chinese provocations against the Senkakus and Taiwan, terming them particularly insensitive at a time when the PRC should be cooperating with the international community to prevent the spread of COVID-19.

: A Japanese government source opines that China’s relatively favorable statements about Japan are motivated by an effort to ease its international isolation, but that Beijing has not compromised on security issues.

: A Japanese government source opines that China’s relatively favorable statements about Japan are motivated by an effort to ease its international isolation, but that Beijing has not compromised on security issues.

: Researchers from Xishuangbanna Tropical Botanic Garden, led by Dr. Yu Webin publish research suggesting that the coronavirus was introduced from outside the Huanan Seafood Wholesale Market, but then spread rapidly within it.

: A Nikkei  columnist terms the rupture between the CCP and the Japan Communist Party the JCP’s “long goodbye.”

: Malaysia declares that it will choose a 5G partner based on the country’s own security standards amid strong pushes from the US to exclude Huawei.

: A Nikkei columnist terms the rupture between the CCP and the Japan Communist Party the JCP’s “long goodbye.”

: South Korean Foreign Minister Kang Kyung-wha meets with Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi to discuss cooperative measures to combat COVID-19, as well as the potential delay of Xi’s planned Seoul.

: UN experts accuse North Korea of increasing imports and exports of banned and restricted good such as coal and petroleum products despite explicit sanctions.

: US and Europe reach a general agreement on confronting China.

: South Korean and Canadian Foreign Ministers agree on efforts to expand bilateral economic cooperation and bolster exchanges of high-level officials at Munich Security Conference.

: China Daily declares  that the fight against the spread of the coronavirus has brought China and Japan closer together.

: Director of the Hong Kong and Macau Affairs Office Zhang Xiaoming is replaced by Xia Baolong, chairman of the Chinese People’s Political Consultative Conference.

: Japan reports its first death related to coronavirus.

: China Daily declares that the fight against the spread of the coronavirus has brought China and Japan closer together.

: Reversing its Jan. 20 statement that no defense-related data had been affected by last year’s cyberattacks, Mitsubishi Electric states that some sensitive information may have been compromised.

: A former head of Japan’s National Graduate Institute for Policy Studies credits Abe’s China policy with hedging the risk of China’s unilateral attempt to change the regional order while engaging the PRC in multilateral norm- and rule-building, as well as promoting cooperation in beneficial projects.

: Reversing its Jan. 20 statement that no defense-related data had been affected by last year’s cyberattacks, Mitsubishi Electric states that some sensitive information may have been compromised.

: A former head of Japan’s National Graduate Institute for Policy Studies credits Abe’s China policy with hedging the risk of China’s unilateral attempt to change the regional order while engaging the PRC in multilateral norm- and rule-building, as well as promoting cooperation in beneficial projects.

: Philippines declares intent to terminate major security pact that has allowed US forces to train in the country.

: WHO proposes “COVID-19” as official name for the illness caused by the new coronavirus.

: Chinese PLA Air Force flies into Bashi Channel during exercise, prompting a Taiwanese response.

: South Korea and the US hold working group meeting in Seoul spotlighting issues of policy coordination on inter-Korean exchanges between North and South Korea.

: Thailand bars passengers from Holand America’s MS Westerdam cruise ship from disembarking, amid fears of the coronavirus.

: Global Times, while thanking the Japanese government and civilians for aid in dealing with the coronavirus epidemic, states that despite better government-to-government relations, “we cannot be overly optimistic about the prospect of bilateral relations.”

: US State Department official involved in nuclear talks with North Korea arrives in South Korea for a meeting of a bilateral policy coordination working group on the regime.

: South Korean Unification Minister Kim Yeon-chul reaffirms the need for inter-Korean cooperation in railways, roads, and tourism, as South Korea seeks to expand cross-border exchanges as part of efforts to continue its engagement with North Korea.

: The coronavirus death toll in China climbs above 1,000.

: Global Times, while thanking the Japanese government and civilians for aid in dealing with the coronavirus epidemic, states that despite better government-to-government relations, “we cannot be overly optimistic about the prospect of bilateral relations.”

:   Bank of Japan appoints its top China expert to head the BOJ’s international department, a post previously dominated by officials with experience in Western financial centers.

: Hong Kong imposes a mandatory two-week quarantine on all arrivals from mainland China, including daily phone calls and spot checks.

:   Bank of Japan appoints its top China expert to head the BOJ’s international department, a post previously dominated by officials with experience in Western financial centers.

: UN Security Council panel approves sanctions exemptions to three aid agencies allowing humanitarian assistance to North Korea.

: Coronavirus allegedly kills Li Wenliang, who had been reproached by Wuhan police for “spreading rumors” about the coronavirus.

: Philippine foreign secretary warns that abrogating the Visiting Forces Agreement with the US would threaten crucial security, trade, and economic interests.

: Cambodian Prime Minister Hun Sen visits Beijing, making a public vote of confidence in China’s ability to control the coronavirus epidemic.

: A Chinese field hospital, built in under two weeks, opens to coronavirus patients in Wuhan.

: Japan’s Ministry of Defense confirms plans to procure new standoff missiles.

: Investigators from the International Criminal Court begin collecting evidence involving alleged crimes against humanity by Myanmar against Rohingya Muslims.

: Brunei carries out military exercise in a rare display of how the state thinks about and acts with respect to its own defense.

: US and Japan conclude 2020 Iteration of Exercise Forest Light Western Army.

: Commissioning of three vessels marks quick completion and operationalization of the program for Singapore’s Navy.

: Japan quarantines Yokohama-bound cruise ship, the Diamond Princess, after a man who sailed on it tested positive for coronavirus.

: Japanese government sources announce that expanding support for the domestic drone industry, and that in the fiscal year beginning April 1, the coast guard will replace its Chinese drones with versions produced domestically or outside China.

: Japanese government sources announce that expanding support for the domestic drone industry, and that in the fiscal year beginning April 1, the coast guard will replace its Chinese drones with versions produced domestically or outside China.

: China reports a total of 11,821 cases (cases reported includes Hong Kong, Macau, and Taipei) and 259 deaths. Worldwide, 132 cases of coronavirus were reported outside China in 23 other countries.

: Hong Kong government announces that a passenger on the Diamond Princess who disembarked on January 25 has tested positive for COVID-19.

: NEC reports that it had come under major cyberattacks over several years, including unauthorized access to files related to its business with the Defense Ministry, but that no damage had resulted.

: Trump administration announces travel restrictions, barring entry by foreign nationals who recently visited China.

: NEC reports that it had come under major cyberattacks over several years, including unauthorized access to files related to its business with the Defense Ministry, but that no damage had resulted.

: Singapore Minister for Foreign Affairs Vivian Balakrishnan makes a working visit to Malaysia, meeting with a variety of ministers on bilateral issues.

: China’s new ambassador pledges efforts for “great” development of South Korea-China ties.

: North Korea and South Korea close Joint Liaison Office in Kaesong over concerns about the coronavirus outbreak.

: WHO declares the coronavirus outbreak a public health emergency and a significant threat beyond China.

: US State Department issues advisory to Americans to not travel to China because of the public health threat posed by coronavirus.

: The headline of a front-page article in  Yomiuri  describes Taiwan as a “nation of immigrants” and “model for democracy in Asia.”

: US military begins issuing furlough warnings to almost 9,000 civilian South Korean employees as cost-sharing negotiations remain at an impasse.

: Democratic US senators urge administration officials to reconsider demands in defense talks with South Korea, highlighting the risks of failing to reach an agreement.

: South Korea sends $1 million in aid and a government delegation to help Australia recover from bushfires.

: The headline of a front-page article in Yomiuri describes Taiwan as a “nation of immigrants” and “model for democracy in Asia.”

: USS Montgomery conducts first 2020 FONOP in South China Sea.

: WHO Director-General Dr. Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus meets Xi Jinping to share latest information on the novel coronavirus outbreak.

: US Department of State confirms efforts to extricate diplomats from virus-hit city of Wuhan.

: Malaysian watchdog files a lawsuit against Singapore home minister after it is accused of violating Singapore’s fake news law.

: US confirms second case of coronavirus involving a Chicago women returning from Wuhan.

: Yomiuri  reports that conservative Diet members applauded each mention of Taiwan, and that there was considerable opposition to a state visit by Xi Jinping without improvement on such issues as the intrusions of Chinese ships into Japan’s territorial waters and human rights.

: UN’s International Court of Justice orders Myanmar to prevent Rohingya Genocide.

: Philippines President Rodrigo Duterte renews threat to terminate accord that allows US forces to train in country unless Washington restores the visa of a political ally linked to human rights violations.

: Wuhan officials announce a complete travel ban on residents, suspending urban buses, subways, ferries, and long-distance passenger transport in the city.

: Yomiuri reports that conservative Diet members applauded each mention of Taiwan, and that there was considerable opposition to a state visit by Xi Jinping without improvement on such issues as the intrusions of Chinese ships into Japan’s territorial waters and human rights.

: ASEAN Secretariat invites India to attend a February 2020 RCEP meeting in Bali.

: WHO issues a statement suggesting human-to-human transmission of 2019-nCoV is taking place in Wuhan.

: Foreign tour agencies report that North Korea has closed its borders with China.

: Concerned about Chinese entities purchasing land near security-related facilities including military bases and nuclear plants, the Japanese government considers a screening process for such sales.

: Global Times op-ed criticizes newly announced plans for Indonesian-Japanese coast guard cooperation and President Joko Widodo’s plan to invite Japan to invest more in the Natunas.

: Speaking  in  his  capacity  as  prime minister in a Diet meeting, Abe references Taiwan three times, the first time in 14 years that a sitting prime minister has mentioned the country’s name in the Diet.

: United States confirms its first case of COVID-19.

: China’s new envoy to ASEAN arrives in Jakarta as tensions rise over Chinese conduct in South China Sea.

: ASEAN foreign ministers agree to hold summit with Trump.

: Vietnam chairs ASEAN-IPR meeting in Jakarta.

: US confirms the first patient diagnosed with the new coronavirus in Washington state.

: Concerned about Chinese entities purchasing land near security-related facilities including military bases and nuclear plants, the Japanese government considers a screening process for such sales.

: Speaking in his capacity as prime minister in a Diet meeting, Abe references Taiwan three times, the first time in 14 years that a sitting prime minister has mentioned the country’s name in the Diet.

: Global Times op-ed criticizes newly announced plans for Indonesian-Japanese coast guard cooperation and President Joko Widodo’s plan to invite Japan to invest more in the Natunas.

: Mitsubishi Electric, a major supplier to the Japanese defense and SCADA sectors, reveals that its internal computer networks were hit by a cyberattack, believed to be by a Chinese-affiliated hacker group.

: Global Time states that narrow minds are hindering China-Japan cooperation, and  urges Japan to treat China’s rise rationally rather than regard its deepening ties with other Asian countries as a threat.

: Commander-in-Chief of the Royal Thai Navy begins a two-day introductory visit to Singapore to meet the Singaporean Minister for Defense.

: First case of the “Wuhan coronavirus” is reported in the US. A traveler from China in Seattle is identified as the first case in the US. South Korea also reports its first case.

: WHO issues its first situation report on the Novel Coronavirus (2019-nCoV). As of Jan. 20, there were 282 confirmed cases from four countries including China, Thailand, Japan, and South Korea.

: Singapore Ministry of Health announces that temperature screenings at Changi Airport will be extended to all travelers arriving from China.

: Mitsubishi Electric, a major supplier to the Japanese defense and SCADA sectors, reveals that its internal computer networks were hit by a cyberattack, believed to be by a Chinese-affiliated hacker group.

: Global Time states that narrow minds are hindering China-Japan cooperation, and urges Japan to treat China’s rise rationally rather than regard its deepening ties with other Asian countries as a threat.

: Japanese Prime Minister Abe Shinzo pledges to bolster Japan’s role under its security pact with the U.S. in “outer space and cyber space.”

: Japanese Communist Party (JCP)’s first platform revision since 2004  describes Beijing’s quest for great-power chauvinism and hegemonism “problematic,” with JCP head Shii Kazuo adding that the Chinese Communist Party (CCP) does not deserve the name “communist party.”

: Japanese Communist Party (JCP)’s first platform revision since 2004  describes Beijing’s quest for great-power chauvinism and hegemonism “problematic,” with JCP head Shii Kazuo adding that the Chinese Communist Party (CCP) does not deserve the name “communist party.”

: Abe, in his capacity as Liberal Democratic Party chair, congratulates Taiwan’s President Tsai Ing-wen on her re-election. Tsai notes Japan’s participation, with the US, in the Global Cooperation and Training Framework as an example of deepening bilateral relations.

: Xi Jinping visits Myanmar for his first overseas visit of 2020. Xi and Myanmar State Counsellor Aung San Suu Kyi sign 33 agreements related to infrastructure development, trade, manufacturing, and special economic zones.

: Vietnam’s largest telecommunications company, Viettel, announces it would move forward with development of domestic 5G technology.

: Cambodian Deputy Prime Minister Sar Kheng meets Vietnamese Minister of Public Security To Lam, and signs a cooperation plan for 2020.

: The US begins additional screening procedures for passengers from Wuhan at three airports- San Francisco, New York, and Los Angeles.

: Abe, in his capacity as Liberal Democratic Party chair, congratulates Taiwan’s President Tsai Ing-wen on her re-election. Tsai notes Japan’s participation, with the US, in the Global Cooperation and Training Framework as an example of deepening bilateral relations.

: Xinhua reports  that the University of Tokyo fired a faculty member and owner of an artificial intelligence company after he said the company would not hire a Chinese and, separately, that the university favored those with leftwing political views.

: Xinhua reports  that the University of Tokyo fired a faculty member and owner of an artificial intelligence company after he said the company would not hire a Chinese and, separately, that the university favored those with leftwing political views.

: Japan confirms its first case of the new coronavirus.

: “Phase 1” United States-China trade deal is officially signed in a White House ceremony featuring President Trump and Vice Premier Liu He.

: Thailand Army chief Gen. Apirat Kongsompong visits Indonesia Army chief Gen. Andika Perkasa in Aech, Indonesia. They extend their security cooperation and sign an intelligence pact.

: The United States and Japan conduct a one-day naval exercise in the East China Sea.

: Japan’s Defense Minister Kono Taro visits the Pacific Missile Range Facility on the Hawaiian island of Kauai.

: WHO works with officials in Thailand and China following reports of a confirmed novel coronavirus case outside of China, in Thailand.

: China shares the genetic sequence of the novel coronavirus with the WHO.

: A 61-year-old man dies from pneumonia in Wuhan and is cited as “the first victim of the outbreak that began in December.”

: US Department of State approves the possible sale of 12 F-35Bs to Singapore. The sale is subject to congressional approval.

: Hong Kong requests that China provide genetic information on the “mystery virus” behind the Wuhan outbreak, after Chinese authorities identified the disease to be of a new coronavirus strain.

: Aiming to  counter China’s rapidly increasing presence, Japan’s Internal Affairs and Communications Industry formulates an overseas expansion action plan covering areas such as the export of telecommunications infrastructure that includes specific policy to support submarine cables.

: Japanese Coast Guard announces that Chinese government vessels  sailed just outside Japan’s territorial waters near the disputed Senkaku Islands and in the East China Sea on 282 days in 2019, the highest since record-keeping began in 2008. 126 ships entered the territorial waters around the Senkakus, 56 more than in 2018.

: Chinese researchers identify a new virus as the pathogen behind the outbreak of a pneumonia-like illness in Wuhan as a new coronavirus.

: Aiming to  counter China’s rapidly increasing presence, Japan’s Internal Affairs and Communications Industry formulates an overseas expansion action plan covering areas such as the export of telecommunications infrastructure that includes specific policy to support submarine cables.

: Japanese Coast Guard announces that Chinese government vessels sailed just outside Japan’s territorial waters near the disputed Senkaku Islands and in the East China Sea on 282 days in 2019, the highest since record-keeping began in 2008. 126 ships entered the territorial waters around the Senkakus, 56 more than in 2018.

: US Embassy in China warns Americans in China to avoid animals and contact with sick people.

: Japanese Foreign Minister Motegi Toshimitsu and Vietnamese Foreign Minister Pham Binh Minh meet in Hanoi. Motegi and Minh discuss the importance of maintaining freedom of navigation and the rule of law in the South China Sea, and agree to coordinate Japan’s push for a free and open Indo-Pacific with ASEAN’s efforts to promote stable growth.

: Chinese health authorities report 59 cases of an unknown viral pneumonia that is not SARS, MERS, or bird flu.

: WHO publishes its first Disease Outbreak News on the new unknown virus in Wuhan.

: Myanmar and Bangladesh hold a senior-level border conference, putting the spotlight on efforts to manage strained security ties.

: Japanese press agency Jiji,  noting that the removal of an import ban has often been used as a political goal, expresses hope that the ban China has imposed on products from Tokyo and other prefectures will be lifted prior to Xi Jinping’s visit in the spring.

: Japanese press agency Jiji, noting that the removal of an import ban has often been used as a political goal, expresses hope that the ban China has imposed on products from Tokyo and other prefectures will be lifted prior to Xi Jinping’s visit in the spring.

: Malaysia officially confirms that it will reopen its embassy in North Korea.

: Wuhan police bureau issues letter to Dr. Li Wenliang to stop illegal behavior, alleging he spread “illegal and false” information and “severely disrupted social order,” by telling a group of doctors on the messaging platform WeChat that seven cases of SARS had been confirmed linked to a seafood market in Wuhan.

: Chinese health authorities report that they are trying to identify what is causing an outbreak in Wuhan, as the number of cases rose to 44 and rumors on social media suggested the outbreak could be linked to SARS.

: Singapore’s Ministry of Health takes precautionary measures, warning medical practitioners to look out for suspected cases of pneumonia related to travel from Wuhan. Temperature screenings are implemented at Changi Airport for all travelers arriving from Wuhan.

: Helicopter crash in Yilan, Taiwan kills Taiwanese Gen. Shen Yi-ming.

: WHO maintains ongoing contact with authorities in China over an “unidentified outbreak of viral pneumonia” in Wuhan.

: WHO China Country Office is notified of cases of pneumonia of unknown cause in Wuhan.

: China’s National Medical Products Administration approves pneumonia vaccine developed by Chinese drugmaker Walvax Biotechnology.

: Hong Kong increases vigilance and temperature screenings at border checkpoints after the “mysterious outbreak of viral pneumonia” in Whuan.

: Xue Li, director of the international strategy division of the Chinese Academy of Social Sciences opines that Japan is attempting to counter China through a variety of means, such as participation in assorted international organizations and dithering on participation in the Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership.

: Kyodo reports that the Japanese government prevented a Chinese corporation from obtaining operating rights at a port in El Salvador by warning that it would withdraw $102 million in Official Development Assistance if the El Salvador government agreed to the Chinese tender.

: Chinese health authorities investigate 27 cases of “viral pneumonia” in Wuhan, linked to the seafood market in the city. Seven were in critical condition and “the cause of the disease is not clear.”

: Nikkei notes that, in his reply to Xi, Abe did not use Xi’s pet phrase “a community with a shared future for humanity,” that Chinese authorities are trying to insert into a fifth communique. A compromise statement at the meeting was “shared responsibility for peace and stability in Asia and the world.”

: LDP lawmaker Akimoto Tsukasa is arrested and charged with accepting bribes from Chinese company 500.com to push through legislation enabling the construction of an integrated resort facility.

: An elderly couple visit a Hubei Provincial with symptoms of fever, cough, and fatigue. Their CT images are seen by Dr. Zhang Jixian, who noticed features different from flu or pneumonia. Zhang reports the discovery of the viral disease to be probably infectious.

: After years of lobbying by Tokyo, boneless beef from Japan aged 30 months or less is allowed into China for the first time since September 2001.

: Abe and Xi, meeting in Beijing, pledge to “jointly open a new future for relations,” with Xi saying that they were “facing an important development opportunity.” According to Foreign Ministry spokesman Otaka Masato, Abe did not shy away from sensitive areas, including Hong Kong, Xinjiang, detained Japanese, and maritime security.

: Kono, addressing the crew of the helicopter destroyer Izumo, describes the security environment as severe due to Chinese government ships’ repeated intrusions into Japanese territorial waters in the East China Sea and North Korean missile launches.

: The Japanese defense budget for fiscal year 2020 is revealed to be 5.13 trillion yen ($43.66 billion), the bulk of which will go toward enhancing capabilities in outer space and cyberspace, purchase F-35B stealth fighters, and developing a fighter to replace the ASDF’s F-2s.

: Kono and his Chinese counterpart, General Wei Fenghe, meet in Beijing, agreeing to set up a defense hotline and work together to denuclearize the Korean peninsula.

: Reportedly concerned about leaks in sensitive technology due to the large increase in foreign students, the Japanese government struggles to find regulations that do not elicit criticism that their real target is foreign students from the PRC.

: Japanese authorities search the home of a Diet member and former minister in charge of integrated resorts issues with regard to the illegal transfer of millions of yen from a Chinese investor who wished to build a resort complex in Hokkaido.

: Two days before he was to leave for Beijing and a day before the official launch of China’s first indigenously built aircraft carrier, Japanese Defense Minister Kono Taro lashes out against the PRC’s military buildup, saying that countries cannot expand their spheres of influence by force.

: A meeting between Japanese and Chinese politicians, at first postponed after Beijing demanded that over 40 Diet members take part in a meeting in Gansu, to compensate for the 17 who attended a meeting in Taiwan, is cancelled.

: A group of nationalist Diet members formally state to the Prime Minister’s Office of Japan their opposition to Xi’s anticipated visit.

: Nine of the Japanese Coast Guard’s 12 new large patrol vessels will be deployed around the disputed Senkaku Islands where, despite improved Sino-Japanese relations, Chinese vessels sailed for a record 264 days this year.

: The Japanese Coast Guard says it will stop procuring and using several dozen Chinese-made drones due to concerns about information security.

: The symptoms of confirmed cases of novel coronavirus are first confirmed, according to a World Health Organization (WHO) report.

: The number of Japanese studying in China is reported to be rising, with an increasing number expressing interest in working for Chinese companies.

: In light of recent maritime advances by China, the Japanese government reportedly purchases Mageshima, a privately owned uninhabited southwestern island, for the US military and the Self-Defense Forces to use.

: Nikkei describes the acquisition of Panasonic’s chip business by Taiwan corporation Nuvoton as the latest example of a budding cross-border tech alliance.

: Japan’s Chief Cabinet Secretary Suga Yoshihide reveals that a Japanese in his 50s had been detained in Hunan since July on undisclosed charges.

: Nikkei reports that Japanese dominance of the Southeast Asian auto market is increasingly challenged by Chinese brands. Japanese automakers, heavily invested in large gas-powered vehicle plants in Thailand, have been slow to respond to government-promoted efforts to increase sales of electric and hybrid powered cars.

: Kyodo reports that Japanese corporations Sony and Sharp are among the suppliers to Hikvision Digital Technology, one of the entities the US has blacklisted for human rights violations, while Honda continues joint research with the blacklisted facial recognition company SenseTime.

: Xinhua notes that Xi and Abe have sent congratulatory letters to the first meeting of the China-Japan high-level consultation mechanism on people to people and culture exchanges.

: Xi, speaking with former Japanese Foreign Minister Kawaguchi Yoriko, said that although China must do some things to improve its image, the responsibility to undo prejudiced and biased views against China rests with Japan.

: Huawei chair Liang Hua, speaking in Tokyo to executives and researchers from Japan’s top companies, says that his company expects to spend $11 billion on procurement in Japan, on a par with what it spends in the US, and employ more than a thousand people in its facilities in Japan.

: Japan hosts its first ever full-fledged arms show, hoping to create a forum that will help it tap technology to counter threats posed by China and North Korea, with demonstrators gathering in front of the convention center to protest a perceived affront to the nation’s constitution.

: Asahi reports that US and Japanese government sources had revealed that in August Chinese officials had warned Japan and South Korea against allowing the United States to base intermediate—range missiles on their soil.

: The first case of someone in China suffering from the novel coronavirus could have been a 55-year old Hubei man, the South China Morning Post reports in March

: China releases Iwatani after Japanese officials hinted that the issue should be resolved in order to create “a good environment” for Xi’s state visit in spring 2020. Iwatani had previously worked for NIDS.

: Kyodo reports that, on meeting Japan’s new de facto ambassador to Taiwan, President Tsai Ing-wen said that the timing was right for the two countries to join the Comprehensive and Progressive Agreement for a Trans-Pacific Partnership (CPTPP), in which Japan plays a leading role.

: Zhu Feng, director of Nanjing University’s Institute of International Studies, urges that China do away with a “problem-based perspective” when dealing with Japan and understand that it will take some time to re-establish trust.

: Japan’s National Institute for Defense Studies (NIDS), affiliated with the Ministry of Defense, publishes the 2020 iteration of its annual China Security Report, subtitled “China Goes to Eurasia.”

: Japanese generic drug manufacturers, having become dependent on China for less expensive precursors, found themselves in difficulties after a leading supplier was shut down due to insufficient treatment of waste water. A report jointly sponsored by several Japanese medical associations previously urged supporting domestic production despite greater costs, since the supply of such drugs was a national security issue.

: A 10-person team was established within Japan’s National Security Council in response to alleged intellectual property violations and technology theft by China as well as cyberattacks by North Korea.

: China reportedly seeks what it terms a fifth communique during Xi’s visit to Tokyo in spring 2020, which Beijing hopes will include Abe’s endorsement of China’s Belt and Road initiative.

: Asahi, generally friendly to China, publishes a lengthy obituary on Taiwan activist Su Beng, who passed away in Tokyo aged 100, noting that he “remained committed to Taiwan’s independence until the final moments of this life.”

: According to a Singapore-based analyst, the Chinese-Japanese railway rivalry in the Philippines appears to favor Japan. Research conducted by the Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA) places Japan closer to the country’s economic center of gravity and its projects are proceeding faster than China’s.

: A US coast guard officer, speaking on condition of anonymity, stresses the need for discussions between the Japanese government and public about the Chinese threat, as the PRC continues to build a weapons inventory threatening Japan and other regional states.

: A Japanese historian (later confirmed to be Iwatani Nobu of Hokkaido University) specializing in Sino-Japanese relations in the 1930s is confirmed to have been detained in China on suspicion of espionage. He had previously worked for the National Institute for Defense Studies, a nominally independent think tank associated with the Japanese Ministry of Defense.

: The government of Pakistan’s Sindh region reportedly seeks $2.6 billion in Japanese funds to complete a railway that was envisioned as part of the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC). Analysts hypothesize that the economic burden, coupled with concerns over loss of sovereign control, have created buyer’s remorse.

: Minster of Okinawa and Northern Territories Eto Seiichi visits the Yasukuni Shrine. Eto signs the shine’s register book with his formal title, though emphasizing that he had paid for the ritual tamagushiryo with his private funds. Abe sends the sacred masasaki offering, also with his formal title as prime minister, but did not attend. The Chinese Foreign Ministry responds sternly.

: Satellite images released by the Washington-based Center for International and Strategic Studies show what a Singaporean expert termed a factory for aircraft carriers and other very large vessels outside Shanghai.

: Typhoon Hagibis necessitates the cancellation of a seven-nation fleet review which would have included China.

: It is announced that Self-Defense Forces’ pay will be increased more than 5% during the next fiscal year, with recruitment standards requiring higher levels of competence to deal with cyberspace of outer space threats from unnamed sources.

: On the eve of Beijing’s massive celebration of the founding of the PRC, The Japan Times finds few signs of substance behind the alleged warming of Sino-Japanese relations. As China paraded an impressive array of new weapons, Japan sought countermeasures.

: The Pew Research organization reports that, amid a general drop in China’s image, Japanese views of China have declined to 85% unfavorable, 14% favorable.

: A Chinese scholar, noting that the participants in this year’s meeting of the Quad had been raised to foreign ministerial level, states that China must deepen engagement with Japan, India, and Australia.

: For the first time, the Japanese Ministry of Defense’s Defense of Japan 2019 raises China above North Korea as the major threat to Japanese security.

: Reuters reports that Toyota’s management, in order “to strike a fine balance between China and the United States,” will expand its cooperation with Chinese partners Guangzhou Automobile Group and FAW to include production of hydrogen fuel-cell cars.

: A Yomiuri editorial expresses alarm at the Solomon Islands and Kiribati breaking relations with Taiwan in exchange for economic assistance and advocates caution regarding Chinese moves into the South Pacific.

: Yomiuri quotes an unnamed high-ranking Japanese official as saying that China put explicit pressure on African countries not to attend the Tokyo International Conference on African Development (TICAD), with delegates from some countries reportedly even turning back en route. Whereas 42 leader-level African countries were represented at TICAD, 53 participated in Beijing’s Forum on China-Africa cooperation.

: International e-commerce support firm Trend Express reports that hundreds of billions of yen are made annually between Japan and China through “social buyers”—Chinese citizens living in Japan buying Japanese goods in bulk to resell on social media sites to followers in China.

: Nikkei cites an unnamed source familiar with Sino-Japanese ties as saying that Chinese municipalities are rolling out the red carpet for Japanese companies, likely on orders from the central government. While some bids have been turned down, other Japanese business interests see a window of opportunity for Japanese corporations.

: Asahi reports that US and Japanese ground forces stage a simulated attack against an enemy ship, with China plainly in mind. This is the first such exercise in Japan.

: Xinhua reports on the 25th iteration of a ceremony to commemorate the 88th anniversary of the Shenyang (Mukden) incident that began the Japanese invasion of Manchuria.

: Chinese President Xi Jinping’s spring visit to Japan is reported to include a forum on infrastructure in third counties, with both countries providing financial and other support to such projects once terms are set.

: Japan and Sweden co-sponsor a conference in Taipei on disinformation, reflecting the Taiwan government’s concern that China is seeking to influence its elections.

: An opinion piece in The Japan Times warns Japanese that China has weaponized its tourist industry, and urges Japan and other Asian destinations to welcome but also diversify away from Chinese tourists.

: Japan’s National Police Agency is reported to have requested funding for a new unit dedicated to protecting the Diaoyu/Senkaku Islands. Up to 159 officers could be assigned to Okinawa along with additional helicopters and weapons for patrolling the uninhabited islands of the East China Sea, signaling to China that there will be increased costs if it attempts to advance its gray zone tactics in the area.

: A Global Times article states that warmer Sino-Japanese ties mean an increase in the number of Japanese young people studying in China.

: A Global Times op-ed describes Japan’s aid to Africa as motivated by big-power competition and its desire to become a permanent member of the United Nations Security Council, while claiming Chinese aid is aimed at alleviating poverty and creating jobs.

: NHK reports that Japan is to establish a new police unit covering the disputed Diaoyu/Senkaku islands. Its members will be responsible for dealing with unauthorized landings in Okinawa Prefecture and will be armed with submachine guns.

: Responding to Prime Minister Abe Shinzo’s warning to African states not to accumulate too much debt, a Global Times accuses him of implicit hostility to China, to which China was unlikely to turn a blind eye.

: Nikkei, Japan’s leading economic daily, complains of the increasing intrusions of Chinese research vessels into Japan’s EEZ without permission, as required by Article 246 of the United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea. China does not recognize the validity of the median line between the two countries’ EEZs.

: Japanese government announces it will request a 1.2% increase in the FY2020 defense budget to a record $5.32 billion, much of it for the purchase of advanced US weapons.

: China announces that it would hold a grand military parade on National Day, Oct. 1, that would demonstrate its rising capabilities.

: Japanese Defense Ministry announced its support for venture capital in Africa.

: In response to Chinese and Russian possession of “killer” satellites capable of disabling other countries’ satellites, the Japanese government is to begin development of interceptor systems.

: Japan surpasses China as the top holder of US Treasuries for the first time since May 2017.

: Praying at his father’s grave, Abe vows to continue efforts to revise the constitution, to which China strenuously objects.

: China Daily repeats Japanese newspapers’ description of vice-ministerial talks as “candid exchanges about bilateral and regional issues,” while adding that a Japanese official had said that a majority of Japanese know little about China and advocated more people-to-people exchanges.

: First China-Japan vice-ministerial level talks in seven years are held in Nagano, Japan. Chinese Foreign Ministry reports the officials had “candid exchanges about bilateral and regional issues,” and indicated that a state visit by Xi was likely to take place in spring 2020.

: Chinese government accedes to the Japanese government’s request to send a representative higher than Politburo rank for an October ceremony related to the enthronement of the emperor: Vice-President Wang Qishan will attend.

: Japan and China are reported to be vying for influence in sports programs in the South Pacific, with China offering to train a large contingent of young athletes in several sports and Japan sending judo experts.

: Nikkei reports that several major Japanese corporations, including Nintendo, Sony, Sharp, Ricoh, and Kyocera, have announced plans to move production out of China in response to higher tariffs.

: Several Chinese are arrested for being “spiritually Japanese” as a result of cartoons deemed to have insulted the Chinese people.

: China publishes 2019 defense white paper, the first in five years.

: The 2019 report of the Japanese Ministry of Economic Revitalization expresses concern about increasing dependence on China in the manufacture of information and communications equipment.

: JXTG, Japan’s largest oil refiner, announces it will close a refinery it owns jointly with PetroChina amid falling demand for crude products in Japan.

: Japan’s Toyota and China’s BYD agree to work together to produce electric sedans and SUVs, as Toyota seeks to narrow German automaker Volkswagen’s lead in the Chinese market.

: Self-Defense Forces (SDF) sources complain that efforts to interdict North Korean smuggling were inhibited by the vessels fleeing into Chinese territorial waters.

: Xinhua reports on a rally in Japan’s Saitama Prefecture to mark the 82nd anniversary of the Marco Polo Bridge incident that was a prelude to the Sino-Japanese war.

: Papers in both countries publish pictures of Chairman Xi Jinping and Prime Minister Abe Shinzo shaking hands at the opening of the G20 conference in Osaka.

: Japanese Coast Guard and Maritime Self-Defense Forces conduct their first joint drill in the South China Sea.

: Commenting on China’s just-released white paper, the center-right Yomiuri Shimbun editorializes that the PRC has expanded its military buildup beyond the scope of defensive aims, thereby undermining regional stability.

: Global Times op-ed argues that China’s increased confidence had enabled it to shape the strategic environment on its own, and that developing better relations with Japan was naturally included in its policy agenda.

: Japan’s Foreign Ministry lodges protest against Beijing for conducting an unauthorized maritime survey near the Senkaku Islands.

: Japanese Coast Guard identifies a ship dangling a cable into the sea about 50 nm off the largest of the Senkakus without seeking prior approval. The ship did not respond to requests to stop the survey, leaving the EEZ about two hours later.

: Chinese and Japanese defense ministers make speeches at the annual Shangri-La Dialogue in Singapore, pointedly refraining from criticizing each other.

: Global Times op-ed asks rhetorically if Japan could stand up to the US request that it contain China. A second op-ed that appears the same day interprets the many meetings between Trump and Abe as indicative of Abe’s attempt to balance between China and the US while making sure that its views on Korea are not further marginalized.

: Japan and China hold bilateral talks on nuclear disarmament and nonproliferation in Beijing. It is the first time the countries have held bilateral talks on the issue in eight years.

: A Japanese land surveyor is convicted of espionage and receives a 15-year prison term, the heaviest sentence yet in a string of spy cases in China.

: Japan and India announce they will develop Sri Lanka’s Colombo port, the country’s largest, providing a counterweight to China’s presence at Hambantota.

: Cabinet Office announces that Japan’s economy grew by an annualized rate of 2.1% in the first quarter of 2019, marking the second straight quarter of expansion.

: People’s Daily reports that the Oscar-winning Japanese anime film Spirited Away had been approved for showing in China nearly 20 years after its initial release.

: Xinhua reports that Japan had achieved its 57th consecutive month of surpluses in the current account.

: China’s ByteDance Technology announces it will invest $4.6 million in 2019 in a project to find Japanese stars for its popular video app TikTok.

: The 11th round of US, Japan, South Korea Defense Trilateral Talks (DTT) is held in Seoul to discuss regional security issues.

: Japan introduces its version of Anti-Access/Area Denial (A2/AD). There was no immediate comment from Beijing.

:   Talks held between Chinese and Japanese foreign ministers in Beijing.

: Japan’s Defense Ministry reports that its fighters scrambled 999 times in fiscal year 2018.

: Chinese Foreign Ministry merges its Korean and Japanese divisions.

: Japanese Coast Guard vessel Kojima embarks on a three-month training cruise that includes visit to Sri Lanka and Greece.

: Kong Xuanyou 59 is appointed ambassador to Japan, succeeding Cheng Yonghua, 64, who held the post for nine years.

: Consortium of China’s Harvest Fund Management and Taiwan’s TPK Holdings bail out LCD manufacturer Japan Display.

: Taiwanese software entrepreneur José Lin advocates avoiding China in favor of Japan since the former has “zero concept of intellectual property rights.”

: Taiwan’s Air Force intercepts two PLAAF jets when they cross the median line between Taiwan and China, thought to be a response to Chinese criticism of warming ties between Taiwan and Japan.

: Air Self-Defense Force scrambles against seven PLA Air Force (PLAAF) planes that transit through the Miyako Strait between Taiwan and Okinawa.

: Japan-Taiwan Exchange Organization, Japan’s unofficial embassy to Taiwan, the also unofficial American Institute on Taiwan, and Taiwan’s Foreign Ministry co-host an international workshop under the Global Cooperation and Training Workshop.

: GSDF establishes new bases on Amami-Oshima Island in Kagoshima and Miyakojima island in Okinawa to enhance defense of the southwestern Nansei islands.

: Japanese fighter jets intercepts two Chinese anti-submarine patrol aircraft north of the Senkaku/Diaoyu Islands.

:   Japanese government continues to protest Chinese test drilling for resource development near the intermediate line between the two countries in the East China Sea.

: Japan downgrades its assessment of the economy for the first time in three years, blaming the US-China trade war and declining Chinese economic growth.

:   An LDP policy group proposes the creation of a National Economic Council to develop and integrate strategy on the economy, national security and diplomacy.

: Japanese Defense Ministry announces that it will develop the nation’s first domestically manufactured air-to-ship cruise missile.

: Taiwan’s foreign minister advocates closer Taiwan-Japan cooperation in the face of common threats such as global warming, cross-border ties, and cyberattacks.

: Japanese Defense Ministry announces plans to construct a new type of patrol ship to be mainly used in the waters around the Senkaku/Diaoyu Islands.

: Japanese authorities charge two Japanese nationals with exporting wagyu fertilized eggs and sperm to China without undergoing the required quarantine procedures.

: Japan announces it will send a Maritime Self-Defense Force ship to participate in China’s fleet review.

: Taiwan President Tsai Ing-wen is interviewed in Sankei Shimbun and expresses for the first time her interest in direct dialogue with the Japanese government on cybersecurity and regional security issues.

:   Bank of Japan adviser to the Ukrainian government expresses concerns about the effect on Japanese security of Chinese entities’ acquisition of sensitive Ukrainian technology.

: China’s leading military newspaper urges remaining vigilant about Japan’s creeping militarization.

: Japan and India agree to work together to combat cyberattacks centered mainly on Chinese telecom Huawei’s equipment.

: Japanese e-tailer Rakuten announces it will upgrade unmanned delivery services by using Chinese counterpart JD.com for delivery of heavier packages over longer distances.

: Japanese Coast Guard announces plan to establish a special 24-person section to liaise with other nations to counter maritime advances by China in the region.

: Japan and Britain agree to cooperate in research in such areas as quantum science and artificial intelligence in response to China’s rapid advances in science and technology.

: Japanese government lodges a protest with China over its continued deployment of a drilling ship in a contested areas of the East China Sea.

: Global Times opinion piece criticizes Japan as seeking to expand its military power by signing agreements with Canada, France, India, Australia, and the US.

: German Chancellor Angela Merkel, visiting Tokyo, states her support for the Abe administration’s initiative for a “free and open Indo-Pacific” to counter Chinese expansionism, and pledges cooperation on preventing the Chinese government from collecting and harnessing vast amounts of data.

: Japanese Coast Guard apprehends a Chinese fishing boat illegally harvesting coral in Japan’s EEZ.

:   Beijing’s Global Times reports that Japanese companies continued to invest in China, despite Western analysts’ prediction that the US-China trade dispute would dampen economic ties between China and Japan.

: Senior foreign affairs and defense officials meet in Beijing, agreeing on the importance of promoting confidence-building efforts in the security field.

:   Columnist for China Daily criticizes Japan for unrealistic expectations on the return of the disputed Kuril Islands, citing Japan’s alliance with the US as a major factor.

: Yomiuri editorial calls for the US to visibly display its commitment to Taiwan in the face of Chinese pressure, deeming it essential to restraining China and maintaining stability in Asia.

: Asahi reports that wealthy Chinese buyers’ fondness for Kyoto real estate has driven prices beyond the reach of many locals, engendering resentment.

: Japan and France agree to strengthen security cooperation in the Indo-Pacific region.

: Bloomberg announces that, for the first time since 2012, Japanese companies outranked China’s in the total volume of mergers and acquisitions, predicting that the spending spree would continue in 2019.

: BBC reports that, when a periodic United Nations review of members’ budgetary contributions raised China’s contribution from 7.92 to 12.01 percent while lowering Japan’s share from 9.68 percent to 8.56 percent, Chinese media expressed pride at overtaking Japan while Japanese media interpreted it as symbolic of the country’s diminution of status and a blow to its long-cherished desire to become a permanent member of the UN Security Council.

:   China announces that it would not release a military white paper this year.

:   Yomiuri reveals that the head of Chinese State Security secretly visited Japan at the end of October, with both sides reportedly eager to create a back channel should relations again deteriorate.

: Chinese Foreign Ministry expresses strong dissatisfaction and opposition to the programs’  “false claims and irresponsible remarks,” warning that they are not conducive to the improvement of China-Japan relations nor to the peace and stability of the region.

: Leading Japanese shipping firm Nippon Express conducts trial run to move freight on the Chinese railway that links the PRC’s Xi’an with Duisberg in Germany.

: Japanese government adopts National Defense Program Guidelines and Medium-Term Defense Program for fiscal 2019-23, described as intended to strengthen the nation’s capabilities against China.

:   China urges Japan to ensure the legal rights of two Hong Kong residents who were arrested after one set a fire at the Yasukuni Shrine while the other videotaped the act and placed it on Facebook.

: Ceremonies held to commemorate the 81st anniversary of the Nanjing Massacre, although unlike last year, Xi Jinping does not attend.

: Chinese media warns of retaliatory measures if there is discrimination against Huawei and ZTE, accusing the US of trying to create a wedge in China-Japan ties and of making Japan into a vassal state.

: Chinese court sentences a Japanese woman to six years in prison for spying and seized over $7,000 in assets; the woman is to be deported after serving her sentence.

: Citing security concerns, the Japanese government announced its intention to ban products from Chinese companies Huawei and ZTE from telecom devices in ministries, agencies, and the SDF.

: Japanese government protests renewed Chinese drilling in oil fields disputed by the two countries.

: Japanese Ministry of Defense releases Defense of Japan 2018 white paper detailing numerous instances of Chinese intrusions into Japan’s territorial waters and airspace.

: Xinhua announces that Abe and Xi chatted briefly on the sidelines of the G20 conference in Buenos Aires agreeing that they would step up negotiations on the Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership and the trilateral trade agreement among China, Japan, and South Korea.

: Japanese Ministry of Defense reports few air scrambles and ships entering the territorial waters of the Diaoyu/Senkaku Islands from July through September than in the preceding April-June period.

: Citing intensifying activities of the Chinese navy in the East China Sea, the Japanese government announces plans to introduce a new type of destroyer with minesweeping capabilities that will be the core of warning and surveillance activities in the area.

:   Yomiuri correspondent embedded on the helicopter destroyer Kaga reports that the ship had been followed by the Chinese guided missile destroyer Lanzhou, and that it had detected a Chinese submarine carrying out covert maneuvers at the entrance to the Strait of Malacca.

:   US Vice President Pence and Prime Minister Abe announce a fund that will allocate up to $70 billion for infrastructure development.

: Japan and China held food safety talks, with China declining to provide assurances that it will lift its ban on importing food from the area surrounding the 2011 Fukushima meltdown.

: Yomiuri reported that the Japanese government is considering supplying the MSDF with Avenger drones to strengthen surveillance of Chinese naval vessels.

: Japan’s Defense Ministry announces plans to develop a large underwater drone to guard its remote islands against Chinese incursion.

: The largest ever Keen Sword military exercises are held in Japan, with participation by US, Japan, Canada, United Kingdom, France, Australia, and South Korea.

: Reuters report that Japan and the United States are formulating a combined response to an attack on the Diaoyu/Senkaku Islands, which is expected to be finalized in March 2019.

:   State-run China Investment Corp. and several of Japan’s largest banks agree to set up a $1.8 billion fund to help Japanese companies seeking to expand their businesses in China.

: Prime Minister Abe visits China and meet President Xi and other senior officials in Beijing.

: Japan announces that it will end its official development assistance (ODA) to China after the end of new projects in the current fiscal year.

: China and Japan disclose plans to resume fleet visits for the first time since 2011.

: China warns again that Japan must learn from history, and that the onus was on Abe to bridge the divide.

: Meeting with French President Macron and clearly referring to China, Prime Minister Abe states that the two countries’ cooperation is important since the international order is being challenged.

: At their meeting in Wellington, Foreign Minister Kōno Taro and New Zealand counterpart Winston Peters discuss their alarm that the debts of small South Pacific states that contracted with China may make them beholden to the PRC.

: Center-left daily Mainichi reports that Japanese firms were “hopping onto” the silk road of China’s One Belt One Road policy.

: Chen Youjun of the Shanghai Institutes for International Studies advocates that Japan show a positive attitude toward economic cooperation with China, since the needs of the two are complementary.

: Japanese government publishes its Medium-Term Defense Program for fiscal 2019-23.

: Global Times, normally highly critical of Japan in general and Prime Minister Abe specifically,  publishes an article crediting Abenomics with lifting Japan out of its long economic downturn.

: Japanese Coast Guard reports that the Chinese oceanographic ship Xiangyanghong10 had conducted unauthorized activities inside Japan’s claimed exclusive economic zone.

: Sankei Shimbun reports that a large buoy marked “PRC State Oceanic Administration” had been installed in the vicinity of the Senkaku Islands, and that the government had launched a protest.

: Editorial in Yomiuri urges vigilance against Chinese interference in domestic affairs, pointing to the many Chinese media outlets and Confucius Institutes in Japan.

:  The tankan index, a key economic survey of economic confidence among major manufacturers conducted by the Bank of Japan, declines for the third straight quarter, with concerns about the US trade war with China listed as a major factor.

: Popular Japanese singer-songwriter Tanimura Shinji sings in Beijing at a concert to celebrate the 40th anniversary of the signing of the Sino-Japanese Treaty of Peace and Friendship.

Sept. 28, 2018 Japan and the US hold a joint air drill over the East China Sea.

:   Tokyo stock exchange reaches its highest level since the collapse of the bubble economy a quarter century ago.

: Fifth high-level political dialogue is held in Suzhou, co-chaired by Director of the Chinese Communist Party (CCP)’s Office of Foreign Affairs Yang Jiechi and Japanese National Security Adviser Yachi Shōtarō.

: According to Jiji, Japan’sDefense Ministry is developing supersonic glide bombs to strengthen the defense of remote islands, including the Senkakus, as well as promoting the deployment of GSDF surface-to-ship guided missile units on Miyako and Ishigaki islands.

: Internal PLA magazine obtained by Japanese news agency Kyodo states that a China-Japan maritime crisis would seriously undermine Beijing’s Belt and Road initiative.

: Chinese press report Abe’s re-election to a third term as head of the LDP, adding that he would use it to advance his long-cherished dream of revising Japan’s pacifist constitution.

:   Xinhua reports that thousands of people across Japan, including more than 5,000 at Tokyo’s Hibiya Park, rallied to protest the controversial security laws that the Diet had passed three years ago.

: Sankei Shimbun publishes an interview with former Taiwan president Chen Shui-bian.

: Prime Minister Abe Shinzo and President Xi Jinping meet briefly on the sidelines of the Eastern Economic Forum in Vladivostok, pledging further cooperation on denuclearizing North Korea.

: Following Chinese President Xi Jinping’s pledge to extend $60 billion in finance and investment to Africa, center-right Yomiuri expressed doubts about the real benefits and possible disadvantages for the countries that accepted China’s largesse. The paper praised Japan’s policy of avoiding excess rivalry with China while also exploring ways to cooperate with the PRC including participation in Japan-led projects such as building major roads linking West African countries.

: Writing in The National Interest, a Japanese Maritime Self-Defense Force captain and a US Navy captain argued for closer cooperation between the Japanese and Taiwanese militaries.

:   Signaling Japan’s intent to maintain a presence in the South China Sea, the helicopter destroyer Kaga and two guided-missile destroyers conducted bilateral exercises with a US aircraft carrier strike group.

: Gunji Kenkyu (Military Research) carried a long article on China’s growing ability to project military power into the South and East China seas.  The article, concentrating on the Navy’s amphibious landing operations, followed a previous issue’s focus on aircraft carriers and destroyers.

: ASDF announces it will hold its first joint drills with the Australian Air Force on Japanese territory “amid China’s Pacific push.”

: Japanese Defense Ministry proposes a 2.1 percent increase in the defense budget to $48 billion to counter North Korean ballistic missiles and China’s growing air and sea activities in the waters near Japan.

: Japanese press corps agrees to call off attendance at a meeting between Vice Foreign Minister Akiba Takeo and State Councilor Wang Yi in response to Chinese Foreign Ministry’s decision to exclude a reporter from the conservative Sankei Shimbun.

: China and Japan sign agreement standardizing quick chargers for electric vehicles; together, they control over 95 percent of the market.

: Defense of Japan Annual White Paper 2018 is published, stating that the unilateral escalation of China’s military activities poses a strong security concern for the region including Japan and international community.  The Chinese Foreign Ministry responds by accusing Japan of making irresponsible statements about China’s normal marine activities and seeking excuses for expanding its armaments.

: Japanese defense officials express misgivings about Chinese insistence on a 48-hour moratorium before responding to a hotline call in the event of military clashes.

: Citing a recent joint opinion poll, Yomiuri states that coolness between the two countries persists despite an influx of people and money over the past 40 years. 88.3 percent of Japanese have a bad impression of China whereas only 11.5 percent of Chinese have a negative view of Japan.

: Nissan Motors announces plans to invest about $900 million to boost vehicle-making capacity in China by 40 percent, to 2.1 million cars annually, by 2021.

:   First of a series of articles on the challenges and possibilities of bilateral ties by Yomiuri notes that although leaders on both sides praised warming of relations, the relationship remains “peculiar.” China had restricted group travel to Japan, was critical of those deemed “jingri” (Japanese at heart) and had criminalized acts deemed to have glorified militarist-era Japan.

: Sentaku reports that Chinese capital was acquiring land in and around Miyakojima City allegedly for solar power generation and unspecified other purposes.

: Report shows that Japanese Air Self-Defense Force scrambled planes against Chinese fighter jets 173 times during in the past fiscal year, an increase of 72 over the previous year.

: Using a proxy, Abe sends a ritual offering to the Yasukuni Shrine on the anniversary of Japan’s surrender in World War II, carefully specifying that it had been made in his capacity as LDP president, i.e. not as prime minister, and paid for at his own expense. Xinhua’s condemnation is relatively mild.

:   As a result of a triennial review of members’ contribution to the United Nations’ general budget, China is raised to second largest donor, 12.01 percent, with Japan lowered to third place at 8.56 percent.   NHK suggested that Japan promote its presence by stressing the nation’s contributions to the UN’s international and diplomatic activities.

: Li Keqiang and Abe exchange cordial messages marking the 40th anniversary of the Sino-Japanese Treaty of Peace and Friendship.

: Global Times comments that Shoplifters, winner of the recent Cannes Film Festival’s Palme d’Or, exposes Japan’s child abuse, widened wealth gap, and the harsh realities facing women and the elderly.

: Four Chinese Coast Guard ships sail for about two hours in an area off the Senkakus claimed by Japan as territorial waters.

: Chinese and Japanese sources are curiously silent on the anniversary of the atomic bombing of Hiroshima.  Jiji press alone mentions it, albeit briefly and saying only that Abe would not pay his respects.

:   Chinese stock market loses its number-two ranking to Japan. Trade issues with the US, Beijing’s efforts to cut debt, and a slowing economy are cited as major factors.

: Kyodo cites an unnamed Japanese official as saying that, despite a recent improvement in bilateral ties and their agreement on free trade, Japan and China remain at odds over China’s military activities in the East China and South China seas.

: Asahi reports the first meeting of a committee to discuss Japanese participation in China’s BRI project will be held in Beijing in September.  On the agenda are private sector work on extending the Bangkok mass transit system and the construction of a high-speed railway between its airport and a city in central Thailand.

: Foreign Affairs article by two US analysts argue that Japan should abandon its current forward defense policy against Chinese aggression in favor of an active denial strategy that would hold off invaders until US reinforcements arrive.

: Foreign Minister Kōno Tarō and French Foreign Minister Jean-Yves Le Drian sign an agreement on defense cooperation aimed at countering Chinese activities in the Indo-Pacific region.

: Hangzhou intermediate court sentences a Japanese man to 12 years in prison for spying and other unspecified charges.

: Business weekly Shukan Diamond publishes a 34-page special expressing concern over the threefold increase in the number of Chinese nationals in Japan since 2000, though adding that the newcomers are helping to invigorate local economics and might help to dispel friction between the two nations.

: China reacts sharply to a report that Japan would send the helicopter destroyer Kaga to the South China Sea and hints that China might have to respond with countermeasures.

: Japanese government states its intention to go ahead with deployment of the Aegis ashore system despite North Korean promises to denuclearize, citing uncertainty about future negotiations and the increasing missile threat from China.

: Responding to a Chinese white paper on Arctic policy that calls the ocean “the silk road on ice,” the Japanese government begins working on a plan to secure the country’s own interests in the area.  An unnamed official expresses concern that Beijing would soon deploy submarines in the Arctic.

:   Japan lodges a protest with China over its sending a drilling ship to a contested area near, but not over, the side of the median line separating the exclusive economic zones of the two in the East China Sea. China does not accept the validity of the line.

: Following Sankei Shimbun’s interview with Taiwan Foreign Minister Joseph Jaushieh Wu, the Chinese embassy in Japan lodges a protest condemning the report for “advocating Taiwan independence.”

: An article in the conservative Japan Forward recommends that the Japanese government enact its own version of the Taiwan Relations Act, not shying away from its security aspects.

: Former Taiwan President Lee Teng-hui, visiting Japan at a dinner hosted by the Japan-Taiwan Peace Foundation, calls for the two counties to promote exchanges and cooperation for their common defense.

: According to the Japan National Tourism Organization, tourists from China jumped 29.3 percent in May, to 668,600, vis-à-vis 16.6 percent growth overall.

: Global Times opinion article heaps scorn on Abe’s “rush” for a summit with Kim Jung Un, noting that, in a May 4 telephone call with Xi Jinping,  Abe had sought China’s help in arranging the meeting and his “complicated” situation in seeking the summit.

:   Taiwan government protests  the decision of Japan Airlines and All Nippon Airways to comply with Chinese government orders to list Taiwan as a part of China.

: China and Japan are reported to be in talks to unify standards for electric vehicle charging stations. A common standard would give Japanese EV manufacturers a competitive edge over US and European counterparts, who use a different system.

: A retired Japanese admiral, writing in an Indian military publication, accuses China of taking advantage of the world’s preoccupation with North Korea to expand its salami tactics on Japan in the Senkaku and Taiwan on the offshore islands of Quemoy (Jimmen) and Matsu (Mazu).

:   Bilateral maritime and aerial communications begin official operation. Japanese Defense Ministry officials hope that, because it is part of a formal agreement, the Chinese military will take it seriously and abide by it.

: Japan announces a plan to set up a maritime dialogue with France as part of its Indo-Pacific strategy “to deter the aggressive maritime advances of China.”  France’s overseas territories in New Caledonia and French Polynesia give the country a direct interest in the stability of the region.

:   According to conservative magazine Sentaku, Chinese money has been buying land in Hokkaido, particularly near areas with port facilities.  Though ostensibly acquired for agricultural purposes, the land has lain fallow, raising questions about the ultimate motive behind their purchase.

: Twenty-one Japanese nationals are detained in Chongqing. Sichuan province, as well as in Hebei, Henan, Guizhou, Shanxi, Liaoning and Ningxia  sometime between May 5 and 15, possibly because they were Christians doing missionary work. Five were later returned to Japan.

:   Japanese government announces it will use yen loans to develop ports in three Indian Ocean nations (Myanmar, Sri Lanka, and Bangladesh) as part of Abe’s “free and open Indo-Pacific strategy” to counter China’s efforts to dominate the sea lanes connecting Asia and Africa via the Middle East.

: //www.asahi.com/ajw/articles/AJ201805260034.html">remove an informal cap on defense spending that is 1 percent of GDP that began in the 1970s. It also backs his plan to retrofit the helicopter carrier Izumo into an aircraft carrier, for upgrading the capabilities of Self-Defense Forces, and for Japan to have a stronger presence in space and cyber technology.

: Japan hosts the triannual gathering of leaders of 18 South Pacific countries and territories with Prime Minister Abe pledging fine-tuned assistance in both soft and hard terms.

: Japanese Coast Guard conducts a fleet review for the first time in six years; the suspension was due to the JCG being occupied with intrusions of Chinese government ships into areas administered by Japan but claimed by both countries.

: Citing threats from North Korea’s ballistic missile launches and Chinese activities in the East China Sea, Japan approves a new ocean policy highlighting maritime security. Previous versions, issued every five years since 2008, had largely centered on the development of resources at sea.

: China’s second aircraft carrier, and first entirely indigenously built, begins sea trials, with Japanese media expressing concern over the implications for regional security.

:   Conservative daily Sankei Shimbun, citing a government source,  reports that a ship registered to a state-owned Chinese company had been undertaking trial digging that could be preparatory to building new offshore platforms.

: Prime Ministers Li Keqiang visits Japan for the first time since taking office. He and Abe sign an agreement on a hotline after a decade of talks.

: //www.the-japan-news.com/news/article/0004421498">establish a public-private council to discuss Belt and Road projects. While Japan hopes to improve ties with the PRC through economic cooperation, the government fears that China is using the initiative to expand its hegemony.

: Adm. Takei Tomohisa, former MSDF chief of staff, states that Japan should remain vigilant to see that China “does not change the status quo in the region,” and that military ties between Japan and Taiwan should be increased.

: Stockholm International Peace Research Institute reported that an Asian arms race was occurring in response to tensions with China. Hong Kong’s South China Morning Post, summarizing the SIPRI study, notes that Japan had boosted military spending for the sixth straight year, while India, loosely aligned with Japan in the Quad arrangement with the United States and Australia, had overtaken France and moved into the world’s top five military spenders.

: Japanese Defense Ministry releases study into the conversion of the MSDF’s helicopter destroyer into a full-fledged carrier “in case Japan were required to provide rear-line support for a U.S.-led war.”

: Commenting on recent Sino-Japanese economic exchanges, a member of the Development Research Center of China’s State Council advocates that the two stand together to protect an open global trading environment, and jointly oppose Trump’s unilateralism.

: Britain’s Royal Navy and the MSDF participate in their first joint exercises in the waters off the Kanto region, designed to enhance their cooperation.

: Replying to a question on a delegation of lower-ranking PLA officers visiting Japan after a six-year suspension of defense exchanges, Ministry of National Defense spokesperson Wu Qian states that China was willing to jointly work with the Japanese side to enhance mutual trust, accumulate consensus, and manage and control disputes.

: Draft law prohibiting people in Japanese military uniforms taking selfies outside memorials and other locations associated with the War of Resistance Against Japanese Aggression is submitted to the Standing Committee of the National People’s Conference for second review, with supporters stating that “the new clause mainly targets acts that glorify the Japanese invasion and invaders. It clearly states that such behavior won’t be tolerated”

:   Yomiuri editorial states that tension between China and Taiwan is directly linked to Japan’s national security, and that the Japanese government should take unspecified steps to counter China’s intimidation tactics.

: Japanese Defense Ministry reveals that it has completed the design concept of fighter jets to replace the ASDF’s currently deployed F-2s.

:   British journal Scientific Reports publishes findings confirming massive deposits of rare earth minerals in Japan’s exclusive economic zone near Minami-Torishima Island.

:   Fourth high-level Sino-Japanese economic dialogue, and the first in eight years, opens in Tokyo.

: Yomiuri editorializes that “resolute measures” are needed against China’s maritime advances, which could “pour cold water on efforts to improve Japan-China ties.”

:   Japan Times editorial applauds Xi Jinping’s promise to loosen trade restrictions, but cautions that follow-through was not automatic and should be carefully monitored.

: Japan activates its first marine unit since World War II. It is described as having been trained to counter occupation by China.

:   According to Asia Times, Taiwan has been sharing with Japan information on its investigations into attacks, cyber espionage, and major data breaches.  Taiwan is believed to be a testing ground for Chinese techniques before they are deployed against other countries.

: Yomiuri, in a four-part series on the defense of Japan, summarizes efforts to reinforce remote islands against China.

:   Sankei Shimbun reports that Japan is to deploy an ASDF mobile radar unit in the Ogasawara Islands to monitor airspace violations and approaching foreign aircraft, to compensate for the lack of fixed radars on surrounding islands.

: Yomiuri editorializes that the recent GSDF reorganization was crucial in dealing with China, whose incursions into Japan’s territorial waters had become a normal occurrence.

: Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesperson, responding to a statement that Japan’s Ministry of Education had amended its curriculum guidelines to teach high school students that the Diaoyu/Senkaku Islands are indisputably Japanese territory, urged Japan to face squarely history and reality, educate youth with a correct view of history, and “cease stirring up troubles on the relevant issue.”

: Philippine Defense Secretary Delfin Lorenzana accepts three Beechcraft TC-90 planes from Japan, noting that, although the relationship between his country and China is very strong, the maritime row with China is “still a security worry.”

: A draft of Japan’s third five-year ocean plan will explicitly address security threats including China’s maritime advances.

: The GSDF announces creation of a Ground Component Command, to take effect from March 27.  An Amphibious Rapid Deployment Brigade has been created as well. The reorganization aims to enhance the force’s ability to respond to contingencies on remote islands as well as natural disasters.

: China transfers control of its Coast Guard to the People’s Armed Police (PAP), which was placed under the command of the Central Military Commission (CMC) in January.

: The LDP’s Research Commission on National Security recommends that Japan introduce a multi-mission “defensive” aircraft carrier.

: Japanese government announces that $940 million in investments and loans will be made available to fund space start-ups, to better compete with China and other countries.

: Foreign Minister Wang Yi, in an address to the National People’s Congress, says China is willing to work with Japan to restore relations to healthy, stable growth “as long as Japan does not prevaricate, flip-flop or backpedal but accepts and welcomes China’s development.”

: Reuters reveals that the Japanese government has issued requests for information (RFIs) to the US and Britain for a new fighter plane.

: Yomiuri, Japan’s largest circulation paper, opines that Xi’s consolidation of power “bodes ill for China and the world.” Coupled with the PRC’s sustained military buildup, it is essential for neighboring countries to be vigilant.

: National Institute of Defense Studies’ (NIDS), a think tank attached to Japan’s Defense Ministry, publishes the 2018 version of its China security report, The China-US Relationship at a Crossroad.

: China reacts angrily to the NIDS report, with Ministry of National Defense spokesperson terming it “irresponsible and untenable.”

: A Nikkei analyst, citing a number of efforts China has made to improve its weapons, expand its basing rights, and produce aircraft carriers, accuses China as “acting in a way that recalls European imperialism.”

: Chinese government announces that the country’s defense budget would increase by 8.1 percent in 2018.  Asahi reacts with dismay, noting that the PRC’s defense budget is already the world’s second largest even though it does not include many military outlays.

: Japan’s leading business daily describes Abe as making efforts to charm allies to counter Beijing’s growing influence, citing Australian Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull’s tour of the GSDF training ground and Defense Minister Onodera Itsunori becoming the first foreign dignitary to inspect HMS Queen Elizabeth.

:   Japan launches its seventh reconnaissance satellite, an optical satellite that can detect missile launches “and other things at military and other facilities” in North Korea and perhaps elsewhere in Asia.

: China Daily article advocates passage of a law prohibiting the wearing of Japanese imperial army uniforms.

: According to former MSDF executives, and despite the Defense Ministry’s denials, the helicopter destroyer Izumo was designed to be adapted as an aircraft carrier.

: Two men who posed in Japanese military uniforms at an anti-Japanese war monument in Nanjing are arrested after they upload photographs on themselves on social media. According to South China Morning Post, there have been similar instances in the past several months.

: Japan’s MSDF reports a vessel marked Min Ning De You 078 (with Min meaning Fujian, and Ningde a city in North Korea) transferring oil to a North Korean flagged tanker near Shanghai, in violation of UN sanctions.  The Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesperson states that the Chinese government attaches great importance to the information and is carrying out an investigation.

: An article in China’s Guoji Wenti Yanjiu predicts that, despite obstacles such as institutional hurdles to constitutional revision, pacifist sentiment, and the inexperience of its military, Japan’s capacity for self-defense is likely to increase in the coming years.

: At a meeting in Sydney, Japan, Australia, the US, and India discuss establishment of a joint regional infrastructure scheme as an alternative to China’s Belt and Road Initiative.

: Japanese economic growth in the last quarter of 2017 was 0.05 percent, the eighth straight quarter of growth and longest since the financial bubble of the 1980s.

: Japanese government announces that, in response to Chinese rapid military expansion it is considering introduction of the F-35B, which needs a much shorter airstrip. It has commissioned a study on the feasibility of converting the helicopter destroyer Izumo into an aircraft carrier, with the defense of Japan’s remote islands in mind.

: An article in Hong Kong’s South China Morning Post credits Japan with taking the lead in countering China’s Belt and Road initiative, citing Foreign Minister Kōno’s visit to Sri Lanka, which had given China rights to the port of Hambantota in exchange for debts.

:   Eric Chuo, head of Taiwanese machinery manufacturer Hiwin Technologies announces that his company planned to make Japan its top priority in 2018.  The company, with branches in nine countries, is considering building plants in Aichi, and plans to acquire a Japanese machinery maker.

: Yomiuri reports that Japan and China are making arrangements to resume military exchanges begun in 2003 but suspended since the Japanese government bought three of the five disputed Senkaku Islands from their Japanese owners in 2012.

: Chinese Vice Foreign Minister and Special Representative for Korean Peninsula Affairs Kong Xuanyou meets Japan’s Director-General of the Asian and Oceanian Affairs and chief representative for Six-Party Talks Kanasugi Kenji in Beijing.

: Foreign Minister Kōno Tarō visits China, his first since taking office in office and the first by a Japanese foreign minister in 21 months. His counterpart Wang Yi calls for “Japan’s joint efforts to advance ties, adding that there were “many disturbances and obstacles.”

: The first of an anticipated 10 F-35A stealth fighter jets is deployed at the Japanese ASDF base at Misawa Airbase in Aomori Province.

: A spokesperson for the Chinese Foreign Ministry expresses strong dissatisfaction with the opening of an exhibition in Tokyo to showcase Japan’s claim for the Senkaku Islands. China’s resolve to safeguard sovereignty over the Diaoyu Islands, she added was steadfast.

: Japan and France agree to conduct a joint maritime exercise in February that is described as “a show of strength against China’s ambition to make the South China Sea its stronghold.”

: Senior legislators from China and Japan meet in Tokyo and agree to work to improve ties.

: Japanese government announces plans to strengthen naval security capacities to nations in the Indian Ocean.

:   Joint training exercises between the Indian and Japanese coast guards were for the first time joined by their counterparts from Sri Lanka and the Maldives.

: China Military Online comments that Japan’s announced intention to unify its capabilities in space, cyberspace, and electronic warfare under one command “is yet another step toward Japan’s ‘normalization of the military’ as well as an attempt to break the ‘purely defensive defense’ and the ‘peace constitution.’”

: Thai professor portrays his country as playing China against Japan “like a bamboo tree in the wind.”

: Conservative Japanese daily Sankei Shimbun asks how, in the face of this fresh provocation, the Abe government could say that improved relations with China were possible.

:   Yomiuri reports the first government admission that a submarine, in this case accompanied by a PLAN frigate, had entered the contiguous zone near the Senkaku chain.

:   Global Times editorialized that, although the submarine intrusion incident could have been addressed through diplomatic means, Japan had “hyped it up instantly, derailing its recent efforts to improve ties with China.”  Jiefang Junbao, official newspaper of the PLA, added that “the Chinese military will continue to firmly defend China’s territorial sovereignty and security interests by all means necessary.”

: Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesperson urges Japan to stop making trouble over the Diaoyu Islands issue, protesting the entry of two MSDF ships entering the contiguous zone of Chiwei Islet.

:   Japanese government announces arrangements to introduce a new missile intercept system on two of its Aegis-equipped destroyers that will be deployed in FY 2019 and 2020.

: Japanese comedian Muramoto Daisuke says if China invaded the Diaoyu/Senkaku Islands Japan should immediately surrender, adding that Japan had stolen Okinawa from China.  Global Times responds with an opinion piece by a Chinese student in Japan, who said that criticism of the comment revealed “erosion of the concept of free speech in Japanese society.”

:   Global Times, reprinting Xinhua, has a relatively low-key response to Abe’s plans to revise the constitution, adding only that there was “staunch criticism” from opposition parties and the public. China Daily runs a cartoon showing a slyly smiling Abe cutting the lock on the cage of a large, vicious lizard, as a frightened dove tried to fly away.

:   An opinion piece in Global Times argues that bilateral security cooperation between Australia and Japan is part of a plan to preserve the hegemony of the two plus India and the United States, “reframed as ‘rules-based international order’ on the pretext of supporting a peaceful and stable Indo-Pacific.”

: Xinhua announces the launch of a multi-year effort to compile previously missing historical records from 1931-1945, including “invading, looting, and other crimes of Japanese troops” to help fill in missing gaps.  The study is to include an estimated 1 million characters and to be ready for publication in 2020.

: At a press conference, Prime Minister Abe Shinzo announces that his new year’s resolution is to take the net big step toward revising the constitution.

:   Speaking at a meeting at a Tokyo hotel, Prime Minister Abe declares that he would like to make 2018 a year in which both the “Japanese and the Chinese people perceive that bilateral relations have greatly improved.”

: Sankei Shimbun reports the Japanese government had begun arrangements for an agreement with like-minded countries to create international rules on electronic commerce.

:   Yomiuri reports the Japanese government would cooperate with China in providing aid to African states, hoping that China would make greater efforts to stop  North Korean proliferation and easing the way to a Sino-Japanese summit to mark the 40th anniversary of the conclusion of the Japan-China Peace and Friendship Treaty.

: Japan’s Nikkei, citing examples from Australia, New Zealand, and Antarctica, opines that China’s behavior was “sending chills through South Pacific politics.”

: Japanese Coast Guard reports that three Chinese Coast Guard ships entered Japan’s territorial waters near Kuboshima in the Senkaku  chain, leaving after an hour and 45 minutes. This is the 29th such incursion since the beginning of 2017.

: Liberal Democratic Party Secretary General Nikai Toshihiro states that Japan and China have pushed their relations to a new stage that allowed them to discuss the future together.

: Japanese government sources reveal that the Defense Ministry is mulling a plan to buy F-35 stealth fighter jets for use on the MSDF’s helicopter carriers.

: Global Times states, without giving details, that Sino-Japanese ties had finally broken out of their “slump.”

: The 11th China-Japan Comprehensive Forum on Energy Saving and Environmental Protection is held in Tokyo and 23 agreements on cooperation projects are signed.

: Following the announcement that the Japanese government plans to seek a 1.3 percent increase in the country’s defense budget, an editorial in the center-left Asahi expresses concern and calls for rigorous debate on the expenditures when the Diet reconvenes in January.

: Japan’s Defense Ministery  reveals that the delivery of most of the 52 AAV-7 amphibious vehicles contracted for by the marine corps has been delayed.

: Japan and Taiwan announce the conclusion of a memorandum of understanding to enhance search and rescue at sea.

: Chinese Air Force conducts what it describes as routine air patrols, passing through the Strait of Tsushima and also conducting “encirclement” patrols close to Taiwan.

:   Kyodo reports polls conducted by Japanese nonprofit think tank Genron NPO and the China International Publishing Group show a marked improvement in Chinese and Japanese views of relations between the two countries.

: A two-plus-two meeting of the British and Japanese defense and foreign ministers is held in London. The two sides agree to strengthen security operations.

:   Survivors of the Japanese bombing of Chongqing during World War II protest a ruling of the Tokyo High Court affirming the judgment of a 2015 decision of a lower court that they were not entitled to compensatory damages. A lawyer for the plaintiffs announces that the group would appeal to the Japanese Supreme Court.

: Nanjing massacre is commemorated in Nanjing and other places. President Xi does not use his presence at the Nanjing event to make a speech.

: Chinese NGOs write to the Japanese Embassy in Beijing requesting an apology from the government to the victims of the Nanjing massacre and payment of compensation.

: Japanese and Chinese negotiators reach a tentative agreement designed to avert clashes in the Japanese-administered Diaoyu/Senkaku islands area.

: Japanese government sources reveal that Japan is considering the introduction of air-to-air and air-to-ship long-range cruise missiles.

: A third round of meetings between Chinese and Japanese econonomic leaders and former high-ranking officials held in Tokyo.  Former Vice Premier Zeng Peiyan declares that  stable, healthy  Sino-Japanese relations conformed to shared interests.

: China Central Television (CCTV) suggests that Emperor Akihito’s decision to seek abdication was prompted by opposition to Abe’s plans to change Article 9 of the constitution.

: Yamaguchi Natsuo, head of Japan’s Komeitō party and coalition partner of the ruling LDP, meets Xi Jinping, carrying a letter from Abe.

: Japan announces it is considering support to companies that conduct joint projects with Chinese companies in countries along China’s Belt and Road economic zone.

: Japan announces that it would postpone until the next fiscal cycle construction on additional land it had leased to expand the JSDF base in Djibouti.

: President Xi and Djibouti President Ismail Omar Guellah announce the establishment of a strategic partnership.

: Japanese Ministry of Defense reports a decrease in the number of air defense scrambles, 51 percent of them against Chinese aircraft, for the first half of 2017.

: PM Abe and President Xi Jinping meet briefly during the Asia Pacific Economic Cooperation forum in Da Nang, Vietnam.

: Japan’s Defense Ministry publishes its 2017 White Paper.

: The 15th China-Japan Security Dialogue is held in Tokyo.

: The 19th National Congress of the Communist Party of China is held at the Great Hall of the People in Beijing.

: Xinhua reports the death of the last of the 24 former comfort women to sue the Japanese government for being pressed into providing sex services to the Japanese military during World War II.

: PM Abe attends Chinese Embassy reception for the PRC’s National Day.

: Four Chinese ships patrol area near the Diaoyu/Senkaku Islands.

:   China’s Foreign Ministry spokesperson, reacting to Abe’s calling a snap election of the Diet, warns him against changing the constitution.

: China says changing the name of islands will not prevent Japan from declining.

Sept. 23, 2017:  China’s Foreign Minister Wang Yi advises counterpart Kono Tarō that Japan should talk and act cautiously to play a constructive role on the Korean nuclear issue rather than abandoning dialogue.

: The head of Japan’s Urasenke Tea School visits China and meets with, among others, State Counselor Yang Jiechi.

: Mayor of Ishigaki City asks that islands under its administrative jurisdiction be renamed to include “Senkaku Islands” in their formal names.

: Prime Minister Abe Shinzo visits India and meets Prime Minister Narendra Modi. They agree to deepen defense ties and to cooperate to balance against China.

: Xinhua accuses the Abe administration’s FY 2018 budget request of crossing the line into offensive weaponry and violating the country’s constitution.

:   Global Times editorial accuses Abe of encouraging Indian aggressiveness on the disputed Indo-Chinese border in the Himalayas to divert China’s attention from the South China Sea and relieve pressure on Japan.

:   Japan attends a ministerial-level meeting with 50 African countries, pledging investment to aid their efforts to achieve self-sustaining development.

:   Global Times editorial predicts that, due to its domestic difficulties, Japan will not back India in its border dispute with China, and that the only road forward for Japan is closer cooperation with China.

: Environmental ministers of China, Japan, and South Korea agree on cooperation to combat the spread of invasive species such as fire ants.

: China responds to Japanese sanctions on Chinese companies doing business with North Korea saying that unless Tokyo desists immediately “it must be responsible for the consequences.”

: Japan’s Defense Ministry requests a record-high 2.5 percent increase to 5.25 trillion yen ($48 billion) in its initial budget for fiscal 2018, to bolster security measures against North Korea’s military provocations and China’s maritime advances.

:   Japan commemorates the 72nd anniversary of its surrender in World War II, with Chinese media commenting that, for the fifth year in a row, Abe did not mention remorse over Japan’s actions nor did he pledge that the country would never again engage in war.  Although Abe did not attend ceremonies at the Yasukuni Shrine, nor did any currently serving Cabinet members, they noted, Abe sent a sacred masasaki branch, and numerous Diet members representing several political parties were present.

:  Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi warns Japan and the US against opposing China’s development of islands in the South China Sea.

: Japanese government reveals that it made several high-level requests to China to restrict its acceptance of North Korean workers, to no avail.

: Chinese media’s coverage of the anniversary of the atomic bombing of Hiroshima admonishes Japan to cease downplaying its role as an aggressor in the war and portraying itself as a victim.  Only by learning from history can a recurrence of war tragedies be prevented.

:   United Nations report on contributions to the UN’s budget announces that China’s share is estimated to rise to second place after the US, surpassing Japan for the first time.

: Sankei reports that Japanese Maritime SDF frogmen from a nearby Japanese ship approached two Chinese military vessels anchored at China’s newly opened base at Djibouti, and were driven away by crew members.

: Japanese government sources reveal that China has established a new mobile drilling rig near the Japan-China median line in the East China Sea.

:   India’s The Pioneer daily describes the launch of the Asia-Africa Growth Corridor for Japan-India collaboration, together with Australian participation, as an initiative through which “the China challenge could be tackled.”

: Japan announces sanctions on two Chinese firms, including a bank accused of laundering North Korean cash. Five entities, including two Chinese organizations and nine individuals, are affected.

:   PRC military expert disparages the new air-to-ship supersonic missiles Japan plans to deploy, describing their limited range as unable to reach aircraft carrier formations and hence  a fatal shortcoming.

: Japanese Coast Guard announces that, in a first for these particular areas, two Chinese Coast Guard ship violated Japanese waters off the coasts of Tsushima and Okinoshima.

: Xi and Abe meet on sidelines of the G20 in Hamburg; Yomiuri says both must make concessions, suggesting joint development of the East China Sea gas fields. Xi responds on July 13 by proposing “separation of politics and economy.”

: China Daily states that Japan’s helicopter destroyer Izumo’s passage near China’s nine-dash line in the South China Sea and participation in exercises with a US aircraft carrier a few days earlier have been interpreted by the international community as open defiance of China’s “so-called assertiveness” in the waters.

: Four Chinese Coast Guard ships enter Japanese territorial waters near the Diaoyu/Senkaku Islands.

: Chinese Foreign Ministry objects to new curricular guidelines for Japanese elementary and secondary schools that describe “China’s Diaoyu islands … as ‘inherent’ parts of Japanese territory.” Japan must face up to history and reality and stop provocation.

: Editorial in Japan’s leading business newspaper states that the time has come for the US and Japan to examine the pros and cons of joining the AIIB.

: China Daily criticizes Japan for warning its tourists to avoid activities that might arouse suspicion that they are engaging in espionage; the government should instead “issue a self-warning: efforts to whitewash the war crimes … will not succeed.”

: New volume appears in the 51-book series to commemorate the 80th anniversary of the July 7 Marco Polo Bridge incident that began the Japanese invasion of northeast China.

: China Daily opines that the birth of a panda cub at Tokyo’s Ueno Zoo might renew Sino-Japanese friendship.

: Chinese media highlights Japanese opposition parties’ resistance to a government bill that would criminalize the planning of serious crimes.

: Xinhua describes Japanese participation in an international maritime defense trade show as a “dangerous push to buddy up to Southeast Asia.”

: US government pledges that Japan will never be a bargaining chip in its trade negotiations with China.

: Article in the conservative Japan Forward argues that, because the US is losing ground in the Pacific, Japan should double its defense spending against Chinese expansionism.

: Tokyo and Beijing agree to resume high-level talks on joint resource development and avoiding unintended maritime clashes.

: Japanese defense official states that the country is seeking to increase sales of military equipment to Southeast Asia states amid growing tensions with China and North Korea.

:   Delegation from China’s National People’s Congress calls on Japan to “properly handle Tibet-related issues.”

: China protests publication of The Real History of Japan, a second book by Motoya Toshio, rightist president of the APA Group, which blames Chinese soldiers for the looting and killings of the 1937 Nanjing massacre.

: China announces that a seventh Japanese national is being investigated for harming national security and violating China’s domestic law.

: Defense Minister Inada Tomomi’s address at the annual Shangri-La Dialogue decries continued unprovoked, unilateral attempts to alter the status quo in Asian seas, adding that “government ships of a certain country continue to make periodic incursions into Japanese waters,[and] construct outposts in the South China Sea… for military purposes.”

: Fourth round of high-level Sino-Japanese political talks is held in Tokyo, co-chaired by Chinese State Councilor Yang Jiechi and Japanese National Security Advisor Yachi Shotarō.  According to Xinhua, Yang calls on the Japanese side to honor its words and abide by the relevant rules regarding the historical and Taiwan issues.”

: Global Times editorial says Abe administration’s interest in joining the AIIB is a ruse to improve relations with China while using Taiwan as a bargaining chip in negotiations and contriving an imaginary China threat as a pretext for revising Japan’s Constitution and reviving militarism.

: Japan and India agree on a broad strategy to promote development across an arc from East Asia to Africa to counter China’s expanding influence in the regions.

:   Japan’s conservative Sankei Shimbun predicts that if the US withdraws from Japan, the country could not defend itself against China, since the latter’s quantitative advantages would prevail over SDF weapons that had been developed exclusively for defensive purposes.  Hence Japan should not rule out the possibility of possessing nuclear weapons.

: China expresses dissatisfaction with the renaming of the former Association of East Asian Relations as the Taiwan-Japan Relations Association.

: Chief Cabinet Secretary  Suga Yoshihide states that Chinese authorities had placed six Japanese nationals under detention since March on grounds they conducted illegal activities; China’s Foreign Ministry confirms the arrests on the next day. Asahi reports all six were conducting surveys for possible hot springs in cooperation with a Chinese company.

: Xinhua reports that 1,800 people had gathered in Tokyo’s Shinjuku Park to protest Prime Minister Abe’s plan to amend the Japanese Constitution.

: Argentine President Mauricio Macri, having obtained 16 agreements worth an estimated $17 billion from China, flies to Japan to seek additional funding.

: Philippine Daily Inquirer reports that the Duterte administration plans to “pivot to neighboring economic giants” by seeking loans from both China and Japan.

: Xinhua cites Foreign Ministry spokesperson Hua Chunying as describing a planned meeting between the Japanese and New Zealand prime ministers as “inappropriate,” and calling on Japan to improve relations with China through concrete policies and actions.

:   Japanese Foreign Ministry lodges a protest to China after four Chinese Coast Guard vessels, one of which appeared to be equipped with guns, entered Japanese waters near the disputed Diaoyu/Senkaku Islands. A drone was seen flying above. Chinese Foreign Ministry refuses to accept the protest, replying that the drone was used for aerial photography and that, since the islands belong to China, the ships and drone had a right to be there.

: Japan Times editorial observes that Beijing must address skepticism about China’s motives in establishing the OBOR, and that there is a long way to go if the plan is to serve its stated end of providing the cornerstone of a regional and global order.

: Asahi reports that Nikai carried a letter from Abe to Xi that proposed the two of them engage in regular shuttle diplomacy.  Asahi adds that Nikai also called on Xi and other Chinese leaders to visit Japan by the end of next year, the 40th anniversary of the Treaty of Peace and Friendship.

: Renmin Ribao publishes an article by “Commentator,” a standard pseudonym for a high-ranking Chinese leader, stating the China must first know whether Japan is completely changing its strategy of confronting China or if the overtures are merely a strategic easing.  China would warmly welcome the first, but regret the second.

:   Asahi opines that since Xi’s BRI strategy is designed primarily for the advancement of Chinese investment, it can be considered a form of neocolonialism. Unless China modifies its traditional tendency to pursue only its own interests, questions will remain about its suitability as the promoter of collaborative international efforts.

:   Nikai Toshihiro, secretary general of Japan’s ruling Liberal Democratic Party (LDP) meets Chinese President Xi Jinping, and, according to Asahi Shimbun, says the question was not if but when Japan will join AIIB. A parallel story in Beijing’s Global Times does not mention this statement, saying only that Nikai congratulated China on the success of its Belt and Road Forum for International Cooperation and cited the need to develop bilateral ties.

: Yomiuri Shimbun says Xi Jinping’s maritime Silk Road plan is inseparably linked to Chinese efforts to secure footholds for its navy through harbor improvement projects and is aimed at excluding the US from the region.

: Space News reports that the Japanese government is considering a three-satellite addition to the country’s domestic navigation system so that it would work even if China were to take out the US Global Positioning System.

: In what Asahi Shimbun terms “cutter diplomacy,” Japan supplies front-line coast guard cutters to the Philippines and Vietnam. Japan’s Coast Guard has created the post of director for international coast guard cooperation who will focus on providing support to Southeast Asian nations.  Trilateral exercises including Japan, the Philippines, and Vietnam are planned.

: Editorial in Huanqiu Shibao, which is sponsored by Renmin Ribao, official newspaper of the Central Committee of the Chinese Communist Party (CCP), states that the momentum of Xi Jinping’s Belt and Road Initiaive would be more robust with Japanese, US, and South Korean participation.

: Associated Press reports that multinational military drills off Guam designed to show support for the free passage of vessels in international waters amid concerns that China intends to restrict access to the South China Sea were postponed indefinitely after a French landing craft ran aground there.

: Yomiuri Shimbun expresses concern that the China-founded Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank (AIIB) could be twisted toward the PRC’s ends, and urges reform of the Asian Development Bank, whose largest financial contributor has been Japan, and all of whose nine successive presidents have been Japanese.

: Xinhua reports that four Chinese Coast Guard vessels conducted a patrol in the territorial waters off the Diaoyu/Senkaku islands on May 8.

: China Daily reports that Xiao Jie met Taro Aso, who serves concurrently as Japan’s deputy prime minister of minister of finance. They agree that dialogue is important to both sides and pledge to deepen pragmatic cooperation in the financial field.

: Yomiuri Shimbun summarizes war games sponsored by the  US Sasakawa Peace Foundation involving unlikely scenarios for a Chinese-Japanese confrontation over the Diaoyu/Senkaku Islands.

: Chinese Finance Minister Xiao Jie skips a trilateral meeting with Japanese and South Korean counterparts, casting doubt over the outlook for regional cooperation among the Northeast Asian powers.

: Global Times criticizes the Japanese Foreign Ministry 2017 Diplomatic Blue Book of escalating tensions on the Korean Peninsula as an excuse to strengthen its military, create the conditions for revising Article 9 of its Constitution, and enhance its global influence.

: Chinese and Japanese diplomats agree to use political and diplomatic means to deal with the danger of North Korea’s development of weapons of mass destruction.

:   LDP Secretary General Nikai Toshihiro announces he will attend Silk Road meeting in China in May.

:   China protests when 95 Japanese lawmakers and a Cabinet member visit the Yasukuni Shrine’s Spring Festival.

: Xinhua complains about revised Japanese textbook guidelines allowing “beneficial” or “appropriate” content from Mein Kampf.

:   Japanese Defense Ministry says Chinese planes accounted for 73 percent of the record number of SDF scrambles against foreign aircraft approaching Japanese air space in 2016.

: Japanese police put two Chinese women on a wanted list after acts of vandalism were committed at several shrines and temples they visited.

: Premier Li Keqiang says that China prioritizes relations with Japan.

: Food products mislabeled as Japanese discovered in Chinese cities.

: Leading Japanese commentator expresses concern that President Trump will use the US-Japanese Mutual Security Treaty as leverage for trade concessions from China, thus weakening the alliance.

: Yomiuri urges Japanese government to address potential “gray zone crisis” as China seeks to take the Senkaku/Diaoyu Islands.

: Prime Minister Abe refers to Taiwan as an important partner.

: Liberal Democratic Party (LDP) panel urges Japan to acquire pre-emptive strike capabilities and to give immediate consideration to introducing THAAD.

: SDF ships will begin to protect US military vessels for the first time in peacetime, to improve deterrence against North Korea’s missile development and China’s expansion of its maritime environment.

: US military analyst urges Japan to undertake construction and station personnel on the Senkaku Islands regardless of Chinese objections.

:   Diet passes 2017 defense budget, up 1.4 percent, or less than 0.926 percent of GDP.

:   China complains after a Japanese Cabinet member visits Taiwan.

:   Global Times notes that Japan’s commissioning of a large helicopter-carrying destroyer would increase its navy’s strike capability.

:   Japan government expresses concerns over financially troubled Japanese giant Toshiba selling its computer chip business to China’s Tsinghua Unigroup Ltd.

:   CCTV castigates Japanese design firm Muji for selling items manufactured in Tokyo and banned since the 2011 nuclear meltdown, although the products were actually manufactured in Osaka and Fukui, both being even further from the meltdown than Tokyo.

:   Japan’s Kyodo reports an internal Chinese military magazine has declared that it has established dominance in the South China Sea, and that it has normalized patrols around the Diaoyu/Senkaku Islands since 2011.

: CCTV reports that food products from the area near the Fukushima nuclear meltdown are being sold in China, resulting in a removal of products from the shelves despite a refutation issued by the importer.

: Singapore’s Channel News Asia reports that France, in a clear message to China, sent an amphibious carrier to lead exercise drills with UK troop-carrying helicopters and Japanese and US personnel around Tinian Island in the western Pacific.

: Australian Foreign Minister Julie Bishop supports Japan’s right to sail through the South China Sea.

: China announces 7 percent defense budget increase to $152 billion, or 1.3 percent of GDP.

: Global Times describes closer relations between Vietnam and Japan as a strategic partnership built on empty rhetoric.

: Japanese Coast Guard announces it will install video transmission devices on all 12 of its large patrol vessels charged with monitoring the security situation around the Diaoyu/Senkaku islands, enabling the Office of the Prime Minister as well as high-ranking JCG officials to watch the videos in real time.

: Japanese Coast Guard announces that China conducted 63 seabed surveys inside Japan’s East China Sea EEZ over the five years from 2012 to 2016 without prior authorization.

:   According to the Chinese Tourism Academy, Japan is the third most visited country for Chinese citizens, after Thailand and South Korea.  Chinese buyers are also increasingly active in the Japanese housing market.

: Japanese national engaged in bilateral youth exchange programs is arrested in Beijing on spying charges.

:   Xinhua reports that Prime Minister Abe underwent a grilling from opposition parties over his name being used to solicit funds for building a nationalist elementary school.

: China’s Foreign Ministry lodges solemn representations to its Japanese counterpart over National Institute for Defense Studies (NIDS) 2017 report for sending the wrong messages to Taiwan “independence secessionist forces.”

: CCTV announces that a Japanese legislator suggested that the dispute over the Diaoyu/Senkaku islands be referred to an international arbitration tribunal as well as the issue of deployment of the Terminal High Altitude Area Defense (THAAD) system to Japan.

: People’s Daily announces that Chinese textbooks will henceforth state that the starting time for the War of Resistance to Japanese Aggression will be moved from 1937 to 1931 “to fully reflect the crimes committed by Japanese troops during the conflict.”

: China’s minister of education complains about Japan’s revised curriculum guidelines.

: China Daily cites Ruth Benedict’s Chrysanthemum and the Sword as finding the roots of Japanese duplicity as a results of fear of the unknown and of failure.

: China Global Television Network (CGTV) announces that three Chinese Coast Guard vessels sailed around the Diaoyu Islands.

: Global Times reports that Chinese and South Korean athletes changed hotel accommodations in response to the APA hotel group’s placing of a book denying that the Nanjing Massacre actually happened.

: China’s Ministry of Defense says that Japanese Self-Defense Forces participation in US freedom of navigation operations in the South China Sea would cross a “red line.” Japanese Defense Minister Inada Tomomi reiterates that the SDF would not deploy to the South China Sea with the US Navy.

: Japan’s National Institute of Information and Communications Technology reports a 2.4-fold increase in cyberattacks in 2016 over 2015, the majority originating from China.

:   Japan-China Friendship Association is officially established in Okinawa.

: China complains after US Secretary of Defense James Mattis confirms that the US-Japan Mutual Security Treaty covers the Diaoyu/Senkaku Islands.

:   China warns Japan against interfering in Taiwan affairs after hearing that the militaries of the two were conducting a simulated exercise.

:   London’s Daily Mail reveals that the Japanese government was paying a British think tank to express concerns about China’s involvement in the UK’s Hinkley Point nuclear plant; Xinhua terms this a despicable anti-China scandal.

:   China objects to the APA hotel group’s placing in guest rooms a book that denies that the Nanjing massacre ever happened.

: Japan’s Education Ministry announces a revised curriculum for elementary schools that says the Takeshima and Senkaku islands are an inherent part of Japan’s territory and adding to junior high school curricula that there is no territorial dispute with regard to the Senkaku Islands.

: Japan’s Ministry of Agriculture, Forestry, and Fisheries reveals that 67 unregistered Chinese boats fished near Japan’s Exclusive Economic Zone (EEZ) off Hokkaido and the Sanriku region in 2016, up 50 percent over 2015, many of them using illegal methods.

: Two Japanese think tanks call for the government to further increase defense spending in response to US President Donald Trump’s call for Japan to cover more of the costs of keeping US troops there.

:  First US F-35B joint strike fighters arrive at Iwakuni Marine Corps Air Station  “in support of the defense of Japan and the regional security of the Pacific.”

:  Sankei Shimbun, citing unspecified Japanese government sources, states that Chinese government ships entered the waters continuous to the Senkaku/Diaoyu Islands more than 1,000 times since the Japanese government bought three of the five from private Japanese owners in 2012.

: China’s Ministry of National Defense announces plans to build two aircraft carriers in Dairen shipyards.

: Minister of Defense Inada Tomomi visits Yasukuni Shrine; signs visitor book as “Defense Minister;” China expresses firm opposition and announces “solemn representations.”

: Japan’s unofficial representative office in Taiwan, the Interchange Association, announces that as of Dec. 31, it will operate under the name of the Japan-Taiwan Exchange Association.

: Minister for Reconstruction Imamura Masahiro visits Yasukuni Shrine; China expresses firm opposition of any visit by Cabinet ministers.

: Chinese aircraft carrier Liaoning transits in international waters between Okinawa and Miyakojima.

: Abe government announces record setting defense budget of $43.6 billion.

: 79th anniversary of the Nanjing Massacre.

: Japanese and Chinese foreign affairs and defense officials meet in Haikuo City to discuss implementation of air and maritime communications mechanism.

: Deputy Foreign Minister Akiba Takeo and Assistant Foreign Minister Kong Xuanyou meet in Beijing for Japan-China Security Dialogue.

: Six PLAAF planes transit in international airspace between Okinawa and Miyakojima.

: Vice Foreign Minister Liu attends Japanese Embassy reception celebrating birthday of the emperor; expresses optimism over the course of China-Japan relations in 2017.

: PM Abe and President Xi meet on sidelines of APEC meeting in Lima.

: PM Abe express concern that failure of Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) to come into effect will result in China taking leading role in Asia’s economy.

: China displays J-20 stealth fighter at Zhuhai International Air Show.

: Keidanren and China Center for International Economic Exchange bring together top business leaders in Beijing conference.

: Japan confirms Chinese resumption of exploration of activities in East China Sea.

: Japan-Taiwan hold first meeting of maritime dialogue in Tokyo.

: Japanese, Chinese, and Korean Trade Ministers meet in Tokyo; agree to cooperate in advancing trilateral free trade agreement.

: “Comfort Women” museum with two statues of “Comfort Women,” opens at Shanghai Normal University; Chief Cabinet Secretary Suga finds the display extremely regrettable.

: Former Prime Minister Hatoyama Yukio attends inaugural meeting of international advisory board of China’s Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank held in Beijing.

: PM Abe sends offering to Yasukuni Shrine, but does not visit the shrine during the Autumn Festival; approximately 90 Diet members pay homage.

: Japanese media report Chinese resumption of unilateral development activities in the East China Sea; Japan’s Foreign Ministry protests to Chinese Embassy.

: Ambassador Cheng Yonghua at PRC Embassy reception marking 67th anniversary of the People’s Republic of China calls for efforts to stabilize relations and advance development of bilateral relations.

: Tokyo Forum and Beijing Forum co-sponsor Tokyo meeting of leading Japanese and Chinese finance and business leaders.

: PM Abe delivers policy address at opening of Extraordinary session of the Diet; calls for peaceful resolution of disputes in east and South China Sea.

: Eight People’s Liberation Army Air Force (PLAAF) aircraft transit in international air space between Okinawa and Miyakojima.

: Japanese Foreign Ministry posts 207 documents on its website substantiating Japanese positions on the Senkaku Islands and Takeshima.

: Keidanren and Japan-China Economic Association delegation visits Beijing.

: 85th anniversary of the Manchurian incident.

: China and Russia conduct joint naval exercises.

: Foreign Ministers Kishida Fumio and Wang Yang in telephone conversation agree to cooperate in passage of North Korea sanctions resolution at UN Security Council.

: Japanese and Chinese diplomats and defense officials meet in Hiroshima to discuss air/maritime communications mechanism and East China Sea.

: Japan announces transfer of Coast Guard patrol boats to Malaysia.

: PM Abe attends East Asian Summit in Vientiane; calls for support of Hague Tribunal ruling on the South China Sea.

: Japan announces transfer of two Coast Guard patrol boats to the Philippines.

: Prime Minister Abe Shinzo and President Xi Jinping meet on sidelines of the G20 Summit in Hangzhou; their first meeting in 17 months.

:   China celebrates national holiday commemorating victory in the war against Japan. Neither President Xi Jinping nor members of the Sanding Committee attend Sept. 2 symposium commemorating the event.

: Japan’s Ministry of Defense requests 2.3 percent increase in defense spending in FY 2017.

: Foreign Minister Wang meets Foreign Minister Kishida in Tokyo.

: Foreign Minister Wang meets LDP Secretary General Nikai.

:   National Security Advisor Yachi Shotaro meets Premier Li and State Councilor Yang in Beijing.

: Seventy-first anniversary of the end of World War II.

: LDP Secretary General Nikai meets Ambassador Cheng to transmit Japanese concerns with China’s repeated incursions into Japanese territorial waters.

: Foreign Minister Kishida calls in Ambassador Cheng to protest; charges that Chinese actions have led to a marked deterioration in relations.

: Ambassador Yokoi protests Chinese presence in Senkaku Islands.

: 200-300 Chinese fishing boats accompanied by Coast Guard ships enter Japan’s contiguous zone near the Senkakus; incursions into Japanese territorial waters ensue.

: Vice Foreign Minister Sugiyama calls in China’s Ambassador Cheng to protest.

: Abe government approves Defense of Japan 2016 White Paper.  China’s Ministry of National Defense brands paper as “full of lousy clichés.”

: Keizai Doyukai delegation visits Beijing; meets with Tang Jiaxuan, former president of China-Japan Friendship Association.

: Former Taiwan President Lee Teng-hui visits Japan.

: Foreign Ministers Kishida and Wang meet during ASEAN Foreign Ministers Meeting in Vientiane.

: Newly appointed Vice Minister for Foreign Affairs Sugiyama Shinsuke visits China, meets Vice Minister of Foreign Affairs Zhang Yesui.

: Foreign Minister Kishida denies July 12 UNCLOS Arbitral Tribunal ruling affects status of Okinotori Island.

: China Daily (electronic edition) reports former Prime Minister Hatoyama Yukio is appointed to serve on international advisory board of Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank.

: Prime Minister Abe Shinzo meets Premier Li Keqiang during Asia-Europe Meeting (ASEM) in Ulaanbaatar.

: Permanent Court of Arbitration issues ruling in favor of the Philippines in South China Sea case.

: Sixty-ninth anniversary of the Marco Polo Bridge incident; President Xi does not attend ceremonies.

: China’s Ministry of National Defense issues statement charging Japan Air Self-Defense Force (JASDF) with using fire-control radar to lock onto Chinese aircraft.

: LDP’s National Defense Committee adopts resolution calling on the government to protest Chinese actions.

: PLA Navy ship enters Japan’s territorial waters.

: People’s Liberation Army Navy (PLAN) ships enter Japan’s contiguous zone; Vice Minister Saiki Akitaka calls in China’s Ambassador Cheng Yonghua to protest.

: Defense Minister Nakatani Gen at Shangri-La Dialogue, without naming China, calls attention to island construction in the South China Sea.

: Japan’s Foreign Ministry posts pictures of renewed Chinese oil and gas exploration in the East China Sea on its home page.

: Mitsubishi Material Corp. announces apology and compensation for Chinese victims of forced labor in Japan during World War II.

: Institute for Japanese Studies at the Chinese Academy of Social Sciences issues 2016 Blue Book Report on Japan; cites Abe government’s security legislation as posing a grave threat to areas surrounding China.

: G7 leaders meet in Ise, Japan and issue statement on maritime security.

: Ambassador Yokoi Yutaka arrives in Beijing.

: Ambassador Kitera Masato holds farewell press conference; expresses hope for future oriented Japan-China relationship.

: LDP-Komeito delegation of Parliamentary Union for Japan-China Friendship visits Beijing.

: Taiwan protests Japanese Coast Guard seizure of Taiwanese fishing boat in the vicinity of Okinotori Island; China supports Taiwan’s protest.

: Foreign Minister Kishida visits Beijing and meets Foreign Minister Wang and Premier Li.

: LDP General Council Secretary Nikai Toshihiro visits Beijing, meets high-level Chinese officials, and attends China-Japan-Korea International Forum.

: Japanese Coast Guard seizes Taiwanese fishing boat in Japan’s claimed EEZ in the vicinity of Okinotori Island.

: A 92 member supra-party delegation of Diet members’ led by Cabinet Minister Takaichi Sanae, visits Yasukuni Shrine.

: Japan announces first flight of unarmed prototype stealth jet.

: Prime Minister Abe sends offering to Yasukuni Shrine during the Spring Festival.  China asks Japan to “deeply reflect on its invasion history” and make “a clean break with militarism.”

: JASDF aircraft scramble against Chinese reconnaissance aircraft over international waters between Okinawa and Miyako Island.

: Kitaoka Shinichi, head of Japan’s International Cooperation Agency, tells television audience that China, through militarization of sites in the South China Sea, is slowly working by a show of force to change the status quo in the South China Sea.

: Japan issues Diplomatic Blue Book.

: Xinhua reports that a Chinese military aircraft landed on Fiery Cross Reef to evacuate suddenly ill workers to a hospital site.

: Japanese government releases 750 new documents substantiating Japanese claims to Takeshima and the Senkaku islands.  China’s Foreign Ministry responds that the Diaoyu Dao and affiliated islands are China’s inherent territory…sovereignty …is fully backed by historical and jurisprudence evidence.”

: China’s Ministry of National Defense confirms visit of Gen. Fan Changlong, vice chairman of the Central Military Commission, to several land-reclamation sites in the South China Sea.

: Japanese business delegation led by Kono Yohei meets Vice Premier Wang Yang in Beijing.

: JMSDF destroyers visit Cam Ranh Bay.  Defense Minister Nakatani Gen emphasizes importance of the freedom to the seas to Japan’s security and commits Japan to working with the US and Australia to support peace and stability in the region.

: JMSDF destroyer Ise participates in international naval review off Padang, Indonesia.

: Japan’s Fair Trade Commission and China’s Ministry of Commerce sign memorandum agreeing to share information of mergers and acquisitions and to meet annually.

: G7 foreign ministers meet in Hiroshima.

: Former Prime Minister Hatoyama appointed honorary professor at Sian University of Communications.

: Three PLA Navy ships transit in international waters between Okinawa and Miyakojima.

: Japanese and Chinese diplomats meet in Tokyo to discuss North Korea sanctions.  China is represented by Wu Dawei, Beijing’s representative to and chair of the Six-Party Talks.

: Two Japanese destroyers, the JS Ariake and JS Setogiri, and the submarine Oyashio make a port call to Subic Bay.

: Abe government’s new security legislation goes into effect.

: Japan establishes observation unit on Yonaguni Island.

: Abe Cabinet approves appointment of Yokoi Yutaka as ambassador to China.

: Former Prime Minister Fukuda meets Foreign Minister Wang on sidelines of Boao Form in Hainan. They agree on the need to take steps to improve relations.

: Xiamen municipal government hosts investment seminar in Tokyo.  During 2015 Chinese municipal and provincial governments held 49 investment seminars in Japan, an increase of 49 percent over 2014.

: Japan-China vice-ministerial dialogue on agriculture resumes in Beijing after six-year hiatus.

: Prime Minister Abe attends Coast Guard graduation ceremony in Maizuru, becoming the first prime minister to attend Coast Guard graduation.

: Foreign Ministers Kishida and Wang Yi confer by phone on DPRK sanctions.

: Japan releases Foreign Aid White Paper, emphasizing ASEAN and sea lane security in Southeast Asia.

: US 7th Fleet, Philippine Navy, and Japan Maritime Self-Defense Force (JMSDF) hold consultations in Manila.

: Sansha City mayor announces commercial flights to and from Woody Island.

: China releases 2016 defense budget during National People’s Congress.

: China’s National People’s Congress meets in Beijing.

: China’s Assistant Foreign Minister Kong Xuanyou meets Japan’s Deputy Foreign Minister Sugiyama Shinsuke in Tokyo.

: China’s Global Times reports that a Japanese mission to clear space junk from earth’s orbit was a failure.

: Chinese intelligence-gathering ship operates in international waters off Japan’s Boso Peninsula.

: Chief Cabinet Secretary Suga Yoshihide announces that Chinese authorities arrested Japanese citizen on charges of spying; he says Japan does not engage in spying.

: Japan’s Ministry of Defense announces Japan Air Self-Defense Force (JASDF) scramble against Chines aircraft over the Sea of Japan.

: Japanese, Chinese, and Korean ministers of education meet in Seoul.

: Prime Minister Abe’s policy address to the Diet.

:   China’s Ministry Commerce announces a 25.2 percent drop in Japanese investment in China to $3.21 billion in 2015.

: Foreign Minister Kishida announces his intention to visit China in the spring.

: Japanese media report coordination underway to resume Japan-China high-level economic dialogue, agreed to by Prime Minister Abe and President Xi Jinping in November, 2015.  The meeting would be the first in five years.

: Prime Minster Abe, during Upper House Budget Committee meeting, congratulates Tsai Ing-wen on her election as Taiwan’s president; he looks to strengthening Japan-Taiwan ties.

: Jin Liqun, president of China’s Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank, announces that the bank is open to Japanese and US participation.

: Foreign Minister Kishida Fumio holds telephone conversation with Chinese and Russian counterparts to coordinate response to North Korean nuclear test.