Japan's economy minister said yesterday that the Philippines lost credibility by postponing twin Asian summits this week and doubted Manila's stated reason of an impending typhoon.
Economy, Trade, and Industry Minister Akira Amari also said he believed the summits were effectively cancelled as the rescheduled January dates would not suit all the leaders.
The abrupt postponement of the ASEAN and East Asia Summit "surely lowered the credibility of the Philippine government," Amari wrote on his blog.
Indeed, the cancellation seemed ill-timed. Mayhaps it may have had something to do with trouble in Manila of the Arroyo's own henchmen's doing? Well....
In any case, I was pleasantly surprised that an economic minister from stodgy Japan should keep a blog. And a mighty hip blog it is, too.
Unfortunately, the site is in Japanese. Therefore, I can't confirm whether the story above is true.
Still, the site isn't bad. What really impressed me was what looked to be an economics primer section on the blog. "Study with Akira" it says invitingly.
More info on Minister Akira Amari:
A descendant of Torayasu Amari, a renowned military general who served Shingen Takeda in the mid-16th century, Akira Amari is known for his flair as a public speaker and frequent TV appearances.
After 2 1/2 years at Sony Corp., the Kanagawa Prefecture native followed in his father's footsteps to become a House of Representatives lawmaker. He began his political career in 1983.
He served as labor minister in 1998 under Prime Minister Keizo Obuchi and is a specialist in such fields as intellectual property rights and energy policy.
A close friend of Shinzo Abe, Amari served as secretary general of the campaign office for his LDP presidential run.