- Title: Japan caught wrongfooted by Trump victory
- Date: 10th November 2016
- Summary: TOKYO, JAPAN (FILE - 2014) (REUTERS) ****WARNING CONTAINS FLASH PHOTOGRAPHY*** U.S. PRESIDENT, BARACK OBAMA, AND JAPANESE PRIME MINISTER, SHINZO ABE, SHAKING HANDS U.S. AND JAPAN OFFICIALS SITTING DOWN FOR A BILATERAL ABE SPEAKING DURING BILATERAL U.S. AND JAPANESE FLAGS ON TABLE OBAMA SPEAKING DURING BILATERAL BILATERAL IN PROGRESS TOKYO, JAPAN (FILE - 2013) REUTERS) AN ENTRANCE TO U.S. YOKOTA MILITARY BASE PEOPLE WALKING BY THE U.S. YOKOTA MILITARY BASE SIGN READING (English): "U.S. AIR FORCE YOKOTA AIR BASE" CARS ENTERING YOKOTA AIRBASE SIGN READING (English): "UNITED STATES AIR FORCE Yokota Air Base" TOKYO, JAPAN (FILE - 2013) (REUTERS) VARIOUS OF U.S. MILITARY PERSONNEL WATCHING A SUPER HORNTES DRILL AT IWOJIMA AIR BASE
- Embargoed: 25th November 2016 09:58
- Keywords: Japan U.S. election Donald Trump Shinzo Abe caught wrongfooted
- Location: TOKYO, JAPAN
- City: TOKYO, JAPAN
- Country: Japan
- Topics: Government/Politics,Elections/Voting
- Reuters ID: LVA00457V26H3
- Aspect Ratio: 16:9
- Story Text:The Japanese political establishment has been caught wrong-footed with Donald Trump's surprising win over Hillary Clinton for U.S. Presidency, and just as it passes the Trans-Pacific Partnership deal in parliament on Thursday (November 10).
Trump during his election campaign said he will pull the U.S. out of Trans-Pacific Partnership negotiations, a stark contrast to current U.S. President Barack Obama's cooperative approach towards the 12 nation trade deal.
"Last November, we held a 12-nation leaders meeting about the TPP and agreed to establish the TPP quickly. Current U.S. President Obama is also part of the effort, so we will move forward with the support of the 12 nations. I believe this is important," Japanese government's top spokesman Yoshihide Suga, said during a routine news conference early Thursday.
Despite President Obama's cooperation thus far, concerns about President-elect Trump intention to back out of TPP negotiations is a serious concern, according to Sophia University Political Science professor Koichi Nakano.
"I think Trump's election certainly wrong-footed the Japanese political establishment, which has worked more than anybody else on the assumption that Clinton would be elected. She's known in Japan and she is respected, whereas Trump doesn't seem to know much about Japan, and the Japanese don't really know Trump either," Nakano said.
"The new reality of Trump ruling out TPP so clearly also sent shockwaves among the Japanese political establishment and there's also a lot of explaining to do on the Japanese side that it's not true that Japan is free riding on American defence," he added.
Japan's Lower House passed the TPP on Thursday despite a walk out by the opposition parties, though it is now unsure how the deal will work without the United States being involved once Trump is President.
Japanese Prime minister Shinzo Abe, in an attempt to quickly fix the government's lack of lacune, plans to meet Trump next week in New York on his way to the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation summit in Peru.
Abe will seek to establish good personal ties and pitch the importance of the bilateral security alliance when he meets U.S. President-elect, officials said on Thursday.
Trump's unexpected victory has fanned Japan's anxiety about Washington's commitment to security arrangements in the face of a rising China and a volatile North Korea.
His "America First" rhetoric and calls for Japan and South Korea to pay more of the cost for U.S. troops in the region or face their possible withdrawal have worried officials.
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