Chapter IV.  Diplomacy Machine


1. Organizational Reinforcement of the Foreign Ministry


Under the present international situation facing a turning point, Japan's diplomatic activities have increased in importance. Such activities are supported by 4,148 staff and employees (at the end of fiscal 1988) of the Foreign Ministry in Tokyo and 172 diplomatic establishments overseas (embassies, consulates-general, consulates and permanent government missions). Diplomatic operation has increased qualitatively and grown more difficult qualitatively in various facets, i.e. the implementation of the "International Cooperation Initiative," information gathering and analysis, security measures for Japanese nationals overseas and addressing issues raised by the increased influx of foreign nationals in Japan. Accordingly, expansion and training of personnel are required to cover these tasks. Improvement of working environments for diplomats abroad faced with difficult political, economic social and natural conditions is also required. Such improvement is necessary in order to allow diplomats to efficiently proceed with their tasks. As the international situation has grown more diverse and fluid, Japan's international status and obligations have acquired greater weight and the internationalization of our country has been proceeding rapidly.

The current diplomacy implementation machine, however is insufficient in fulfilling important missions entrusted to the Ministry, and in coping with rapid increase of needs for diplomatic activities, it is imperative to upgrade and strengthen the machine drastically. It is based on this recognition that Prime Minister Takeshita clearly expressed in his policy speech at the 114th Session of the National Diet, his view on the necessity of upgrading the machinery.

Based on these ideas, the Foreign Ministry has made efforts to reinforce its machinery of domestic and overseas establishments, increase the payroll, and expand spending outlays under the fiscal 1989 budget as described below.


(1) Organization and Payroll

(a) Two major reorganization have been enforced on the Ministry in Tokyo. One is the reorganization of the Consular and Migration Affairs Department which is designed to enhance its policy planning capabilities, and consular operation ability. This was due to the fast increase in volume and in complexity of the issue. in this reorganization, the Ministry put particular emphasis on enhancing capabilities for long-term, comprehensive policy planning (the Consular and Migration Policy Division), enforcement of security measures for Japanese nationals abroad and strengthening of the response system for hijacking and other terrorist attacks (the Division for the Protection of Japanese Nationals Overseas and the Division for the Prevention of Terrorism) and reinforcing coordination and planning capabilities for issues regarding foreign nationals in Japan (the Foreign Nationals' Affairs Division).

The second reorganization is the establishment of the Status of U.S. Forces Agreement Division in the North American Affairs Bureau. In order to maintain effective functioning of the Japan-U.S. Security arrangements indispensable to Japan's own security, it is very important to ensure the smooth stationing of the U.S. forces in Japan while gaining the understanding and support of the people. The new division undertakes such task related to the U.S. forces in Japan.

Moreover, the Ministry decided to establish five ministerial ordinance level posts, including four senior assistants for international peace cooperation, scientific affairs, declassification of diplomatic records and emigration affairs, and one coordinator for foreign diplomatic establishments in Japan.

As for Japan's diplomatic establishments abroad, the Ministry decided to set up a new permanent government mission to international organizations in Vienna, the locus of numerous United Nations organs and agencies. As a result, the number of Japanese diplomatic establishments abroad will number up to 173 at the end of fiscal 1989 (107 embassies, 58 consulates-general, two consulates and six permanent government missions to international organizations).

(b) In expanding the Ministry's payroll in fiscal 1989 to enhance diplomatic activities top priority has been given to personnel for the International Cooperation Initiative. Priority has also been attached to the following fields; information gathering and analysis management of economic affairs, consular affairs (including protection of Japanese nationals overseas), and enhancement of the Ministry's Secretariat, etc. As a result, the Ministry has been allocated funds to achieve a personnel increase of 106 people - (32 at the home ministry and 74 at overseas diplomatic establishments, or a net increase of 85 from the previous year) despite severe budget and payroll constraints (see Note).


(2) Budget

Despite severe financial conditions, the Ministry strived to steadily expand its budget for fiscal 1989, giving priority to the five points below. As a result, the Ministry won a budget worth \466.6 billion for the year, up \25 billion or 5.7% from the previous year. The growth rate is higher than 4.1% for fiscal 1988, resulting from wide public acknowledgement of the importance of diplomatic activities.

(a)  Expansion of the payroll

(b)  Enhancement of the diplomacy implementation system including the improvement of working conditions for staff members stationed overseas.

(c)  Promotion of international cooperation (enhancing ODA, promoting international cultural exchange, strengthening cooperation for peace and other forms of international cooperation)

(d)  Enhancement of information gathering and analysis capabilities

(e)  Improvement and expansion of security and welfare measures for Japanese nationals abroad


2. Protection and Safety of Japanese Nationals Overseas


(1) Rapid Expansion and Diversification of People's Overseas Travels

Japan's internationalization features rapid expansion and diversification of overseas travels by Japanese. The number of Japanese who went abroad in 1988 totaled a record 8.43 million, up 23% from the previous year. As of Oct. 1, 1988, the number of Japanese residents in foreign countries aggregated about 550,000, up 5.8% from a year earlier, including both long-term and permanent overseas residents.


(2) Growing Need for Security Measures for Japanese Nationals Overseas

As the number of Japanese people going abroad increases, Japanese nationals are growingly involved in conflicts, civil wars, disasters and other overseas emergencies and accidents, and are increasingly affected by international terrorism and crimes. There have also been increasing unprecedented cases of such involvement.

Major overseas incidents and accidents involving Japanese have occurred one after another, including the hijacking of a Kuwaiti airliner, the revolt in Myanmar (formerly called Burma), the explosion of a Pan Am aircraft in Britain, the kidnapping of a Japanese trading company employee in Laos, the bus fall in China and the deterioration of the Chinese situation. There have been many minor overseas incidents and accidents involving Japanese.

Cases which Japanese diplomatic establishments abroad handled for protection of Japanese nationals numbered 7,988 in fiscal 1988, up 36% from the previous year. The growth rate far exceeded that in the number of Japanese going abroad.


(3) Set-Up for Protection of Japanese Nationals Overseas

In the circumstances, the Foreign Ministry has been dealing with protection and safety of Japanese nationals overseas around the clock. In order to ensure safety of Japanese nationals in foreign countries, the government must expand relevant activities and the people must be more aware of safety problems and step up self-help efforts.

The Foreign Ministry has recommended the people to promote self-help efforts, provided them with safety information through its overseas diplomatic establishments and the Ministry's Information Center for the Safety of Japanese Nationals Overseas and given them safety instructions in order to forestall Japanese people's involvement in overseas incidents or accidents. In preparations for emergencies, the Ministry has also been striving to improve communications networks as well as contacts between its overseas diplomatic establishments and Japanese nationals. As a member of the seven-nation annual summit, Japan has stepped up international cooperation in preventing international terrorism.

The Ministry also reorganized the Consular and Migration Affairs Department upon the enactment of the fiscal 1989 budget in order to enhance safety measures for Japanese nationals overseas and tackle new consular problems including those for foreigners coming to Japan.


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(Note) In calculating the net increase of 85, 45 cut under the staff reduction program were deducted and 24 attaches accepted from other government agencies were added to the nominal increase of 106.