Media reports Japan Foreign Minister Katsuya Okada had agreed to take up a key post as the ruling Democratic Party's secretary-general, just as Tokyo is in the midst of a territorial spat with Beijing that is straining ties between the two Asian giants, a move while Land, Infrastructure, Transport and Tourism Minister Seiji Maehara could lead the Ministry of Foreign Affairs. Maehara seen as very close to Washington.
Prime Minister Kan, struggling with a fragile economic recovery and huge public debt, repeated today that he would take decisive steps on the yen's rise when needed.
Bank of Japan Governor Masaaki Shirakawa: "The central bank will take timely action and appropriate manner when deemed necessary and will continue to provide ample funds to money markets as there is a high level of uncertainty." He also said he strongly expected Japan's currency market intervention would help to stabilise the currency market.
"The intervention does not change the situation that Japan is experiencing deflation, and what the market will be looking at from now is whether or not the government of Prime Minister (Naoto) Kan will implement growth strategies speedily and whether or not corporate taxes will be lowered, among other things." (Nikko Cordial Securities Inc.)