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Japan's New National Border Strategy and Maritime Security

Yoshihiko Yamada


This paper targets the transformation of sea security issues for Japan, which is obliged to consider itself a seafaring country in order to fulfil its responsibility in a global society where the US guarantees freedom of navigation over the high seas. I introduce Japan's remote border islands in the introduction and survey the characteristics of Japan's sea security framework in the following section. After introducing Japan's current legal arrangements on ocean policy, I highlight Japan's maritime interests and evolving strategies. My argument here is not necessarily analytical; rather, I aim to enumerate Japan's border challenges and to share basic knowledge about Japan's sea border works for future empirical and comparative studies. Given Japan's energy and transportation dependence on sea routes, securing not only the sea border but also the far seas is critical for Japan's stability and management. In short, the improvement of the coast guard system and anti-piracy operations deployed far from Japan (particularly in the Straits of Malacca and the sea area off the coast of Somalia) matter to Japan.

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Print ISSN: 0886-5655
Online ISSN: 2159-1229