Tuesday, March 23, 2010

News Blast

Déjà vu in Japan’s agricultural policymaking

The Hatoyama administration has approved a fiscal 2010 budget containing ¥561.8 billion in expenditure on a new ‘individual household income compensation system’ (kobetsu shotoku hoshō seido) for farmers, to be launched in April. This income subsidy will compensate farming households for losses incurred as a result of higher production costs and lower market prices. The scheme will begin with a ‘model project’ targeting rice farms nationally.

Google's China exit means Asian success hinges on Korea, Japan

Google Inc.'s looming withdrawal from China adds to pressure to expand in South Korea and Japan, where the Web-search company has won a fraction of the popularity it enjoys in the U.S. and Europe. There is little doubt that Google's Chinese search engine will be shut down after a two-month standoff with Chinese authorities. Efforts to gain traction have paid off for Google elsewhere in Asia, including Japan, where it took the top spot from Yahoo Japan Corp. Google had 48 percent of Web searches in Japan in February, up from 40 percent a year earlier, according to ComScore. Yahoo had 43 percent.

S. Korea, Japan inch closer to shared perception of history

History scholars from South Korea and Japan have wrapped up a 30-month study aimed at reconciling widely differing views of their shared past, producing one modest agreement and reconfirming that the formerly bitter rivals have a long way to go before resolving all points of contention, including Japan's colonization of Korea. Still, the study was significant in that the two sides clearly identified their differences and provided the basis for future discussions that the neighboring nations hope will lead to a joint history textbook, South Korean researchers in the joint committee said Tuesday.

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