0310 GMT January 23, 2019
In a nationwide opinion poll conducted on Saturday and Sunday, 24.8 percent of respondents said they support the Diet’s approval of the bill to accept up to 345,150 foreign migrant workers over five years to address the Japanese nation’s labor shortage, japantimes.co.jp reported.
The ruling coalition, led by Prime Minister Shinzo Abe’s Liberal Democratic Party, steamrolled the bill through the Lower House in late November despite opposition criticism that the hastily crafted bill lacked details. The bill cleared the Upper House on December 8.
The approval rating for Abe’s Cabinet declined to 42.4 percent from 47.3 percent in the previous survey, which was carried out in early November, while the disapproval rate increased 4.6 points to 44.1 percent.
The latest survey suggests voters’ views of the government’s plan to attract more foreign workers under the new visa system has somewhat changed following the Diet wrangling. The previous survey, carried out in November before the Diet voted on the bill, showed 51.3 percent were supportive of it, with 39.5 percent against it.