night. i'm james tengan. welcome to nhk "newsline". japan's defense minister and a top u.s. marine commander in the pacific have decided to continue forward with plans to relocate a u.s. base in japan. the idea is facing strong opposition from some local governments. they met in tokyo and discussed the plan to relocate the futenma air station. it was moved from a densely populated city area to a coastal district of henoko, within okinawa prefecture.
>> translator: we will do whatever we can to complete the relocation to henoko as soon as possible. in order to reduce the danger and other concerns posed by the base. >> slow and steady will win the race. we'll be patient, because we know japan is committed to the futenma facility and all the other things we've got planned. >> work on the henoko facility is currently suspended and has been since the central and okinawa governments accepted a court proposal to drop opposing lawsuits. they're currently in negotiations over the issue. the governor of okinawa insists that no new military facilities should be built in his prefecture. he wants the base moved out of okinawa all together. the japanese foreign minister is looking forward to next week's visit to hiroshima by his g7 counterparts.
fumio kishida says he wants them to see for themselves the effects of the u.s. atomic bombing there 71 years ago. >> translator: i think it's important for the foreign ministers to take a look at many things with their own eyes and their own hearts. >> on the sidelines of a g7 foreign ministers meeting, the group will visit the peace memorial park and museum and offer flowers to the victims. more than 290,000 people died as a result of the bomb. it will be the first time a sitting u.s. secretary of state will visit the park. the group includes three nuclear powers of u.s., britain and france. he referred to non-nuclear powers in 2014. all said the visit to the monuments was unforgettable. he expressed hope that the g7 ministers will have a similar experience.
two badminton players in japan say they are sorry for gambling at an illegal casino. kento momota and kenichi tago said they let down supporters and teammates. >> translator: i i'm sorry for careless behavior. >> translator: i take c complet responsibility for this. i sincerely apologize for involving kento momota and other teammates. >> both players are sponsored by a telecommunications company. an official for the company says the two started frequenting the casino two years ago.
tago visited about 60 times and lost $90,000. he invited kento momota to join him. company officials reveal six other athletes in its badminton club took part in illegal gambling. kento momota won three international tournaments last year and now ranked second in the world. japan's badminton association said kento momota won't be recommended for the olympic games in rio de janeiro. tago was a rising star in the olympic games. >> vietnam is demanding china move an oil rig in a disputed part of the south china sea. vietnam's foreign ministry spokesperson says they have confirmed the chinese rig was transferred into waters off the coast of northern vietnam. it is not clear who has jurisdiction over the area.
the ministry has launched a protest in hanoi saying it wanting plans for drilling to be stopped and the rig to be removed immediately. china had also moved the rig to nearby waters in january. and the rig caused tension in 2014 when china placed it near the disputed paracel islands in the south china say. the moveauaused a diplplomatic stand off and tense moments at sea when vessels from both countries collided. china claims virtually all of the resource-rich soh h china sea, but vietnam and other parties have rival claims to certain areas. prosecutors in taiwan have indicted five people for professional negligence in the alleged shoddy construction of a condominium complex. it toppled when an earthquake hit southern taiwan in february. the quake killed 117 people.
115 of them in the building collapse in a suburb of tainan city. those charged include the former president of the construction company that built the complex. prosecutors claim the company cut corners to save money. they pointed out structural problems, such as insufficient steel reenforcements to support columns and beams. they also said that blueprint screening and construction supervision did not follow regulations. the popularity of costume play or cosplay, is heating up among young people in china. in cities like beijing, events are held every weekend, and tens of thousands of people dress up as their favorite characters. nhk went to meet some fans at a local event. >> reporter: videos posted by cosplayers on social media are becoming popopular.
one receive 5 million views in five days. the subculture also attracts unlikely players. this woman is a politician. she posted cosplay photos of herself on her social networking page to promote local tourist spots where plum flowers were in bloooom. such photos of someone affililiated with the e counisi pay y received p positive e retion. to find out what drives people to cosplay, i visited an event in beijing. many of the 3,000 participants were dressed as characters from novels and anime that are popular among young people. liu is a freshman at a university. she and her friend dressed as characters from a novel they love. she says cosplay allows her to escape from reality. >> translator: when we all get together, i can forget about my troubles.
it's also fun to make friends through events. >> reporter: the boom in cosplay is partly due to the growth of social media here in china. people are turning to their mobile phones and sending their pictures to their friends online. people who enjoy cosplay are happy when the photos they post on social networking sites get responses fromom other users. the popularity of cosplay has led to an emergence of new businesses. >> translator: we run a photo studio exclusively for cosplayers. please visit us for a photo shoot. >> reporter: the number of cosplay photo studios is increasing in beijing. liu visits the photo studio advertised on the flyer with her friend right away. more than 100 kinds of costumes are on display there. liu picked the female lead
character in a romance story in a farming village in china. they try to follow the story lines of their character's novels. she and her friend paid about $200 for the photo shoot. it was a lot of money for the two girls, but they say it was worth it. >> translator: the pictures turned out exactly the way that we wanted. i'm glad that we did this. >> translator: demand to take photos like this is rising as social networking sites become more popular. customers bring in new customers. i believe demand will grow even more. >> reporter: in china, the spread of social media is fueling young people's passion for costume play, a world where people can set themselves apart from reality is rapidly growing among them.
kazuaki hirama, nhk world, beijing. and now here it's time to get down to business. investors are keeping a close eye on currency movements. the strong yen could have a serious effect on the japanese economy. gene otani has more. the dollar rebounded a bit in tokyo trading hours but still around a 17 month low against the yen, the dollar slide began after the latest federal reserve minutes showed policymakers are cautious about another rate hike. this prompted investors to sell the u.s. currency. and that's impacted global markets as well on thursday the dollar dipped below 100 yen in new york trading. a level not seen since october of 2014. many investors are worried that the strong yen may hurt profits
of major japanese exporters. some ministers and government officials are expressing caution about the currency movement. >> translator: excessive fluctuation on the foreign exchange markets could have an adverse impact. we're watching the move carefully. we'll take necessary steps in line with circumstances. >> following aso's comments the dollar bounced make. there's speculation authorities may intervene in the currencyy market. investors are breathing a sigh of relief after seeing the yen regain against the dollar. that helped lift the nikkei. for more we go to the tokyo stock exchange. >> reporter: a volatile day. the yen hit another high against the dollar. people arere worried about the
impact of a stronger yen on corporate profits and traders saw some encouraging comments. the nikkei added 0.46% to close at 15,821. the topix was up more than 1%. many experts say some stocks were up. tokyo and sony ended higher. yahoo! japan was up and verizon plans to make a bid for japan's yahoo! business. shares were up more than 6%. shares on retailing nose dived and held the nikkei to some extent. it fell 12% on weak earning results.
now investors are likely to be playing it safe until l later ts month w when the u.s. federal reserve and the bank of japan both hold policy meetings. >> thanks very much for that. moving on to other markets. in china the shanghai composite dropped by almost .8 of 1%. sidney's s&p/asx 200 dropped by half of a percent. it was a mixed picture overall in the region, hong kong gained a third day by half of 1%. financials led the way there and stocks rebounded from their lowest point this year. indonesia was down meanwhile by
.4 of 1%. china's growth is a major concern for investors around the world and next week we'll get the nation's gdp data for the first quarter of the year. last year growth slowed to a 25 year low. leaders set a target in the range of 6.5% to 7% down from last year's goal around 7%. government officials have promised to press ahead with structural reforms. we spoke with an analyst on china. he started off by giving us predictions for gdp figures in the first quarter. >> the easing measures are starting through the system. >> i want to ask you to shore up growth more supply side would be
needed like cutting over kp capacity i in the steel and coa industry. how quickly will it be implemented? >> in beijing's policies mind, stability is the number one policy option, so we should not expect to see very aggressive structural reform programs out of china. in beijing's framework the struggle reform works within the system to stream line the system to improve corporate efficiency at the same time not to increase unemployment too much. the chinese style of structural reform involves public sector involvement, fiscal spending, job less location, job retraining and so on. chinese banks ask not to cut off funding abruptly. you can see there's a difference between what the chinese are doing in terms of structural reforms and what the
western-style is. >> can you also tell us about some of the risks these leaders are going to face as they try to hit their target >> one big one is potential policy stake in the form of ovoverly cautious fiscal or monetary expansion. if beijing becomes too cautious they may not be able to sustain the gdp growth rate within the desired range. second rest is in the public markets. they are now exhibiting some conditions. risk that beijing may tighten up trying to attack speculation in cities but at the same time kill the market and pull down the whole economy. >> you mentioned some measures leaders could take. can you elaborate the measures that leaders could take and when we might see them implemented? >> beijing doesn't have a timetable for which mers will come up at what time.
beijing is take a practical approach using demand side policy to expand demand to help underscore growth and at the same time pushing through structural reform measures to improve efficiency. so we have already seen the doses of selective easing being increased. interest rate cuts, cuts in the banking area ratio we'll see more of this going forward. national people congress already approved going forward . we'll see more measures coming up in the coming months. japanese electronics maker made getting around stores easy. the robot measures 90 centimeters tall and is capable
of identifying people in need of help by using data from its online surveillance camera. >> where is the tourist information? >> do you mean visitor center? >> yes. i'm looking for a japanese souvenir. >> it can identify anyone who looks lost and show them the way. if a person asks them a question in english the robot immediately switchch from japapanese to english. they hope to put it to use during the 2020 olympics. here's a look at some other business stories we're following. global trade is expected to remain sluggish this year. risks on these forecasts remain mostly on the down side, such as from further slowing of emerging economies, volatility in financial markets. japan post ad surplus for
february. it amounted to $22 billion. increase in foreign visitors and lower oil prices kept the balance in the black. a japanese government survey shows consumer sentiment improved. consumer confidence stood at 41.7 up 1.6 points from february. government officials attribute the rise partly to wage increases, workers secured in their negotiations this spring. that's it for businesses. i'll leave you with the markets.
the vast trove of leaked documents known as the panama papers are sending ripples around the world. britain'n's prime e minister admitted that he a and his wife did profit from shares set up by his late father. >> samantha and i had a joint account. we had 5,000 units. it was worth something like 30,000 pounds. >> journalists are examining the documents obtained from a panama base law firm. they say cameron's father managed the account. they previously said that cameron and his family had not benefitted from any offshore investments. politicians and public officials from more than 50 countries have been referenced in the leaked documents. nhk looks at the links being made to china andnd north korea.
>> repororter: television went black when there was report that chinese leaders were named in the document. the allegations are being censored online too.o. the documents allege xi's brother-in-law owns two compmpanies in the tax haven in the virgin islands. relatives of two members of the standing committee own stakes in companies in ththe island. chinese officials denounce the allegation. >> translator: we won't comment on such groundless accusations. >> reporter: the report says a british banker helped pyongyang set up an offshore finance company for a north korean bank allegedly help to build arms and expand its nuclear weapons program.
last month the u.n. security council blockeded it on suspici that they were transferring funds to the program. they said they will we reveal more people and companies. undertaken hk "newsline" comes to you live from tokyo. here to tell us about the scorching conditions in india is our meteorologist from the weather desk. >> yes, it's the hottest time of the year across southeast asia. typically august or july are the hottest months in the northern hemisphere, but duduring that time, monsoon season dominates the area. so clouds cover, lower temperatures and showers lower temperatures as well. as the people are dealing with the heat wave. temperatatures were recocordeds follows onon wednesday or thursday. 43 degrees in india and 45 degrees in thailand.
i want to show you some video in india to show you how p people e dealing with the heat. people ate watermelons and drank juice to cool themselves off. power outages is making life more difficult. in india, in a southern state, 66 people have been killed due to the heat. hot weather will likely remain until the rainy season starts in may or june. now it's going to be another hot day for many parts of southeast asia. 42 degrees in india. as well as 40 degrees for northernrn portions of the indochina peninsula. watch out for heatstroke. heavy rainfall in southeastern portions of china. 110 millimeters has fallen, more is expected into the weekend. the same system is also causing rainfall across e e nortofof taiwanan.
as well as the southwestern islands of japan. now to the north of it, quite sunny conditions, and temperatures are going to be extremely high for this time of year. tokyo, the high could be 22 degrees on your saturday. going to be more like may and staying gorgeous as we go into sunday. as for seoul, extremely high temperatures can be found d int next week. across north america, late season heavy snow and heavy rainfall for the coast are affecting many parts of the northeastern u.s. as well as eastern canada and winds are going to be very strong across new brunswick, 110 kilometers for wind gusts are expected. combination of winds and rain coululd toss low visibility. hazardous driving conditions could occur. the system could b be gone b by friday but a new system will be moving into the northeast coast. areas like new york city and washington, d.c. may see icy precipitation. across the southeast, looking pretty dry and quite warm. so people in florida are enjoying beach weather. now across the flip side of the
u.s., beneficial rain is falling across the desert southwest. we are looking aheheavy rainin continue for the next three days or so, becauause another systems moving in from the pacific. temperatures are going to be like this. 21 in l.a. 27 in portland. it was a very hot day on thursday as well. record daily temperature was set in seattle on thursday. the high was 27 degrees. northern chilly conditions. across europe, there are two systems i want to mention. this system cut off from the jet stream has been moving into the balkan peninsula in italy and bringing thunderstorms. and then a new low pressure system has formed over the north of africa. so more rain is expected for algeria, then there is a spot of severe weather over eastern portions of europe. temperatures are going to be quite high across the east. that's it for me now. up next is your three-day forecast.
>> we have been showing you scenes of in and around tokyo enjoying the cherry blossoms over the past few weeks. we would like to take you to osaka, western japan where thousandnds of people have gathereded at the japan mind to envoy the view. for over 130 years, the agency that produces japan's coins has opened its grounds to the public for one week when cherry trees are in bloom. more than 800 people were there when the gates opened for the first day this year. they were able to see 350 trees of 133 varieties. the mint has selected one variety as the b blossom of the year. >> translator: it's great. so many varieties. >> translator: they were worth seeing. >> officials at the mint say the grounds will be open through april 14, and they expect more
molly: you are watching "france 24." it is time for an update for our headlines. there are more -- there is more fallout through the british prime minister -- argentina plus leader denies any financial wrongdoing. he is put under federal investigation. greece resumes migrant deportations from its islands. dozens are sent from laszlo's to a port -- from l