On Day 1 of the TUJ-Platform Joint Seminar, various issues concerning Japan’s domestic politics and Asia policy were discussed among three panelists, Mr. Yoshisuke Iinuma, Ms. Kuniko Suzuki and Mr. Andrew Horvat. First, Mr. Iinuma presented his view on Japanese domestic politics and emphasized a structural shift in public support in favor of the Democratic Party of Japan, due to declining popularity of Prime Minister Yasuo Fukuda, whose personal character does not seem to match today’s public sentiment, and of the old-fashioned LDP politics supported by self-serving bureaucrats. This will lead to the era of two party competition, where consensus could not easily be obtained, especially regarding foreign policy in favor of the traditional Japan-US alliance, according to Mr. Iinuma. Then, Ms. Suzuki overviewed current issues in Japan’s international relations by focusing on “political change” last year and this year. In particular, she explored various implications of leadership change in the US, Europe and East Asia, while pointing out the increasing importance of China as a global player due to its political stability and economic growth as well as key events such as the Olympics. In this environment, Japan should consider its national interest more carefully than ever, according to Ms. Suzuki. Finally, Mr. Horvat talked about pursuing Japan’s national interest by solving “history problems” with Asian countries, especially with Korea and China. Japan can learn from Germany’s experience in directly dealing with “history issues,” and should more actively try to contribute to the regional prosperity for the sake of Japan’s compensation for the past. That would give Japan more free hand and advantages in promoting its national interest in foreign policies, especially in Asia, according to Mr. Horvat.