hello, welcome to nhk "newsline." it is tuesday, december 6th, 10:00 a.m. i'm catherine kobayashi in tokyo. shinzo abe will soon become the first sitting japanese prime minister to visit pearl harbor. he'll honor victims of a deadly attack in world war ii that prompted the united states to join the war. he'll arrive in hawaii on december 26th and be joined by u.s. president barack obama on the following day in honolulu. abe will offer flowers at the "uss arizona" memorial. he'll also hold talks with obama. >> translator: i want to reaffirm with president obama
what we have done over the past four years. i also want to use the opportunity to convey to the world the significance of further strengthening our alliance. the ravages of war should never be repeated. i want to express my resolve toward the future. >> in december 1941, the now-defunct japanese imperial navy attacked u.s. military bases in hawaii. abe says his visit will symbolize the reconciliation between the two countries. thailand's new king has led a ceremony observing the birthday of his father, who recently tied. king maha vajiralongkorn ascended to the throne to replace him just last week. the annual event took place in the royal palace in bangkok. the late king bhumidol adujyadej's birthday was on
monday. he died in october after a reign of seven decades. crowds gathered to see the new king presiding over the event and the buddhist certificate ceremony was broadcast across the nation. >> translator: i believe people will continue to revere the royal family. nothing will change from before. >> translator: the new king knows what to do, we just follow. >> meanwhile the military-led interim government is tightening control of free speech by shutting down websites credit critical of the royal family. senior officials in south korea's government have indicated that president park geun-hye will accept a request from the ruling party to resign next april. a senior member of the parliamentary office suggested park will soon announce she will accept the plan by the ruling
party. at the same time non-mainstream members of the party are said to back an impeachment motion against park. one member of the party leadership said if the vote takes place on friday, every lawmaker should join the session and decide it according to their conscience. south koreans have been outrage the by the scandal. people gathered near park's presidential home and office to call for her resignation. on tuesday, the heads of some of the country's top conglomerates are expected to be questioned by lawmakers in relations to the scandal. leaders from japan and russia want to deepen ties in business and they're generating interest from the private sector. ai uchida joins us from the business desk. >> how to invest in energy. a group of lenders including major japanese banks are responding to a request from tokyo for companies to offer economic support. the helplenders of considering
loan of hundreds of millions of dollars to russia's government-backed energy giant gazprom. those close to the deal say two japanese banks along with u.s. lender jpmorgan chase are in the final stages of negotiations on the joint loan. the sources say the loan will amount to 800 million euros, about $860 million. the three banks have previously taken part in joint lending to gazprom but with the new loan they're apparently anticipating growth in global energy needs. the government-affiliated bank japan bank for international cooperation is also working to set up a yen-denominated credit line worth more than $260 million. the funds will be offered to businesses in russia through a major local bank. the summit takes place december 15th in japan. the japanese government and ruling parties are trying to encourage businesses to carry out research and development
that would strengthen competitiveness. they have decided on a plan for tax system reform for fiscal 2017 that will give corporate tax breaks to firms that increase spending on experimentation and research. this will be determined by comparing the amount companies spend on research with the average total over the previous three years. big firms will get corporate tax breaks of 6% to 14% on research spending. the amount will depend on the proportion of that spending to overall sales. for small and medium-sized firms the figure could be between 12% and 17%. corporate spending on experimentation and research to develop services using drones and artificial intelligence, that will also become eligible for tax breaks. tax breaks or not, some people in japan are putting everything they can into underwater research. coral is a popular material for a wide range of jewelry, but its
natural habitat, deep sea reefs, are being threatened by overhave vesting. in this next report we'll see how people in a major coral-producing region of japan are looking for other ways to cultivate the coral they need. >> reporter: jewelry coral comes in a wide range of colors. from pale pink to deep rich red. much of it comes from koichi prefecture in japan. visitors flock to local shops like this one. >> translator: the designs are wonderful. i just love looking at them. tra >> reporter: but in october local coral producers got alarming news. it came from a meeting of signatories on the convention to international trade in endangered species. concerned about the global design in coral reefs the parties decided to study the
impacts of commercial harvesting. about $52 million work was harvested in koichi in 2015. officials there had already imposed strict regulations on coral harvesting. it's confined to the areas shown in pink on this map. the total haul has been limited to 750 kilograms per year. but local coral producers are worried the society's decision could shrink that amount even further. >> translator: i think more restrictions would hit the prefecture's coral industry hard. >> reporter: producers are faced with a tough question, how can they keep the local coral industry alive without threatening the future of the reefs? so they're exploring methods to breed jewelry coral artificially. they've enlisted the support of marine life experts at the biological institute.
nakaji conducts experiments on artificial breeding. >> translator: the most important elements are these small flower-like parts on the ends of the branches. >> reporter: corals have large branches with polyp-covered tentacles concentrated on the ends. nakachi decided to use these ends of branches to breed coral. he believed they would regenerate after being cut. local coral harvesters provided the raw material. they removed the ends in order to make the shape more uniform. nakaji applies adhesive to the branch ends. he then attaches them to artificial reefs and drops the reefs to the sea floor about 100 meters below.
six months later, the branch ends show fresh signs of life. this gives nakaji cause for hope. >> translator: i think this will contribute greatly to preserving an increasing jewelry coral resources. harvesting coral is a tradition in koichi. i hope what i'm trying to do will help keep it going. >> reporter: the people in koichi are turning to artificial breeding to ensure the survival of their industry. but what they learn could also help preserve a species. let turn to markets now. just a refresher that wall street staged another rally with the dow jones industrial average hitting a fresh record high. investors there largely shrugging off the result of italy's referendum. in tokyo shares opened in the positive tracking gains in the u.s. as well as european union markets. the nikkei 225 up .7%, above
18,400. shares across most sectors are gaining, especially exporters like electronicsmakers. they're being supported by overnight weakness in the yen. the dollar has come off from the overnight high at the upper 114 yen level. right now the pair in the mid 113 yen levels. the euro though has bounced back against the dollar. it is at 1.07 on the upper end. that's a three-week high. on monday following italy's resounding rejection of the reforms, the euro had plunged to the 1.05 level in the immediate aftermath. analysts say the common currency staged a swift recovery as the no vote was largely expected. let's take a look at markets open now in the asia-pacific region and we are seeing gains elsewhere too. south korea leading the gains. the kospi up 1.2%. china markets will open in just under half an hour.
it is almost christmas. and for many that means holiday shopping. here in japan it's not christmas without a cake. and this year department stores are offering a wider selection than usual. one store in tokyo has expanded its lineup of pricier cakes including large ones and those decorated with flowers. one type is big enough for 35 people and costs around $670. the store says preorders for cakes are up about 30% from last year. another department store nearby is also offering special cakes containing lots of fruit. they have 30 special cakes costing over $70 each, but they're all sold out. >> translator: customers usually keep their purse strings tight. but they spend more freely on special occasions like christmas. >> in japan, christmas this year falls on a three-day weekend as friday, december 23rd, is a national holiday to mark the
aftershocks of the magnitude 7.4 earthquake and studied data from the seabed. he says that 30 kilometer stretch of the fault shifted in the quake and he believes if the entire fault had shifted, the tremor would have been much more powerful. he says the remaining part of the fault is close to the shore and has the potential to trigger a magnitude 7.0 quake. the operator of the damaged fukushima daiichi power plant estimated in 2014 that two fault lines could cause a quake with a magnitude of up to 7.1. toda says it's important to improve the method of analysis since the quake was more powerful than the utility's estimate. >> translator: i think a fault could expose the seabed. we should study it and need to review the way we collect data and how we assess it. i believe that could improve our analysis. >> tepco says it will review its
estimates if necessarily. railway operators in northern japan are having trouble maintaining their routes. j.r. hokkaido says there aren't enough passengers to keep half of them in motion. they shut down one section sunday that's been in operation for nearly 100 years. and as nhk world reports, others could soon follow. >> reporter: the platform is packed with people, and the cars are crowded with passengers. if only maske station looked like this every day. but this is the last time it will see trains, and everyone here has come to say good-bye. >> translator: i just wanted to convey my appreciation. thank you for giving me the chance to enjoy beautiful landscapes. >> translator: i think it will feel empty without the railway. i wish this many passengers had been on board every day.
>> reporter: there have been fewer and fewer passengers on the 16-kilometer section connecting maske with rumoi so the railway company decided to shut it down. when the route went into service in 1921, it was a vital line. people used it to transport catches of herring from the coast. this archival nhk footage shows women carrying fish on board in 1965. but times have changed. people have moved away or have come to rely on their own vehicles. this is not the first railway line in hokkaido forced to shut down. in the 1980s, the former national railway operated many lines. but currently only these ones are running. in november, the railway company announced 13 sections are becoming too difficult to sustain. together they add up to 1,200
kilometers, about half of their firm's entire operation. shutting them down would have a huge impact on the people who live across the region. >> translator: i need train service for my hospital visits. i have no idea how i can manage with no means of transportation. >> reporter: and residents aren't the only ones voicing concern. an expert on public transportation says railways must be an integral part of community planning. >> translator: a dwindling aging population and depopulation can be seen in other parts of japan. the continuation of public transportation systems is a problem for rural communities. >> reporter: j.r. hokkaido made a proposal in which local governments own part of the
railway's facilities. for now these governments must figure out how to keep things moving for the communities without relying on railways. ♪ in japan, grooming bonsai trees is mostly seen as a hobby for older people. but bonsai specialists hope to change that. as the next story shows, they think there's room to grow in the school classroom. >> translator: this is excellent, well done. >> reporter: a lesson in taming nature. from bonsai master hiromi hamano. 79-year-old hamano is leading a class at an elementary school. he's given each student a bonsai tree to look after. following the great kanto earthquake in 1923, many bonsai growers moved to saitama north of tokyo.
the soil here is fertile and offers good drainage. hamano's bonsai nursery has been in business for more than 80 years. but he's worried about the future. he says few children know the joys of bonsai. >> translator: bonsai encapsulates the unique characteristics of japanese culture, which makes it a useful thing to know in their life. >> reporter: saitama is hosting an international bonsai event next year. city officials thought these classes would be a way to get local kids involved. hamana's lessons are passionate and simple. his premise is that bonsai is art. >> translator: an ordinary house plant is just a potted plant. but a bonsai tree reflects your aesthetic sense.
>> reporter: each student is working with a red sandalwood, a poplar tree for bonsai. it bears flowers in the spring followed later by berries. is. >> translator: use whichever side you think looks best for the front. >> reporter: once they decide which side is the front, they can begin shaping. >> translator: let's trim the long branches. >> reporter: this is where things get creative. he tells them to imagine how their plants might look when they grow bigger. at the end the class he makes an unexpected suggestion. >> translator: let's name your plants. yours looks cool. you can call it anything. godzilla, maybe. >> translator: i'm calling it dragon. >> translator: i'm calling mine wind. i once had a pet called wind. >> reporter: hamano's pleased. pets get lots of affection, and that's how he wants the children to care for their plants. >> translator: nature is precious, but it's also nice to create a miniature version of it
with your own hands. >> translator: i'll water my plant every morning. >> translator: i hope their love for their plants will evolve into love for other people. i'd be very happy if they pass on this experience. >> reporter: and the master's final lesson, bonsai trees love attention. the children's creations should have plenty of that. when they're exhibited at the world bonsai convention in april. one of japan's rising star baseball players has renewed his contract with his japanese team. but the nippon ham fighter says after next season, they will allow shohei i ohtani to seek a spot in the u.s. major leagues. he's not only a star pitcher but also a strong batter. he disclosed his salary for the
upcoming season at a news conference. >> translator: i signed for $2.4 million. >> some fans say he deserves more. >> translator: did he sign for that small a salary? he deserves double the amount. his play was inspiring. >> ohtani ended the season with ten wins and four losses. he threw record fast pitches of 165 kilometers per hour and also hit 22 homers, helping his team clinch of japan series crown. he was named most valuable player in his league. american sports journalists are keeping a close eye on his career. >> all 30 teams want him. and not all 30 teams are going to be able to afford him because the amount of money he's going to get is going to be record-breaking. >> ohtani says for now he's focused on next season. >> translator: my goal now is to help my team get the series title again.
>> a fast pitch there. people in parts of spain are dealing with the aftermath of heavy rain and flooding. that storm has now moved on and is impacting nearby countries. our meteorologist robert speta joins us with more. >> yes, let's start off here across western areas of europe where we over the past several days have really been watching this storm system. you can see it even on the satellite picture. now it's drifting towards the east across the central mediterranean. but this has been a cut-off low. over the past week it was lingering here off the southwestern coastline of spain really pumping a lot of moisture into this area. i want to show you some video coming out of here. because just on monday we had that significant flooding. waters are starting to receipt. but to put this in perspective, since december 1st, this area has seen about 95 millimeters of
rainfall. now the annual mean rainfall for the month of december typically around 99 millimeters. so that's why you have the significant flooding. look at all that mud and muck buildup inside people's homes. emergency services actually had to respond to about 1,300 calls for help on sunday in these cities. and still looking at clearing conditions. that's the good news. high pressure is working its way in behind it. actually clear weather for much of central and western areas of europe. we still have that low down toward the south, even skirting northern coastlines of nigeria, as it drifts off toward italy could bring severe weather. to the north a separate low moving along the northern edge of this high across parts of the scandinavian peninsula. even there into scotland, northern areas of the british isles, you're going to be looking at some fairly rough weather. london on the other hand, you might be seeing fog out there. a high of 9. paris sunny skies. 10 on the chilly side, clear conditions.
but it is going to remain rather cold here on your tuesday. if we take a look here across northeastern asia we do have a cold front diving in across northern areas of japan. and i know if you are in tokyo, sunny skies out there today. temperatures are even a little bit above average. that's thanks to a warm front that actually moved through on monday morning. things are going to be cooling down once this area of colder air does dive south. it's already bringing fairly rough weather in western areas of hokkaido and northwestern tohoku. even some blizzard conditions out there for a few locations. especially across a lot of the mountains, just because of that tight pressure gradient combined with the snowfall. but as far as tokyo is concerned, even much of western japan, those mountains are stopping that moisture from making it over toward the pacific side. it does look like things are going to stay on the clear side. take a look at your temperatures. tokyo with a high of 17 today. seoul at 3. staying rather cold over there for you. shanghai getting up to 13. chongqing about 15.
the tropics rather tropical into the low 30s. all right, also some messy weather especially for travelers here across the eastern half of the u.s. here over the next 24 to 48 hours. we have a low down toward the south. that's already been creating some flooding along the gulf states. but as that pulls toward the north it's going to continue to interact with colder air. so maybe even severe thunderstorms there in parts of georgia and northern florida on your tuesday. then towards the north this is also getting wrapped up with a separate system. that's going to bring freezing rain, definitely some slick roads, maybe even some heavy snowfall there into ontario and quebec. i do also want to mention this low is kicking off a much colder air mass head including the mid and latter part of this week. temperatures will be dropping. you think it's already cold in chicago, toronto. expect a 10 to 15-degree drop by friday into saturday. here's your extended outlook.
the japanese blockbuster "your name" has won this year's best animated film from the los angeles film critics association. the group announced its top picks for the year on sunday. the feature tells the story of two teenagers, both in high school. the girl lives in a rural area, and the boy is in tokyo. from time to time the strangers find themselves in each other's body. "your name" earned more than $88 million in less than a month when it was released in august in japan. it has since opened in nine countries and territories including britain and china. that's all for this edition of nhk "newsline." i'm catherine kobayashi. thanks for joining us. xnóx
announcer: euromaxx highlights. here is your host. anchor: hello, everyone. it is a pleasure to join you in this week's highlights. let's get a glimpse of these weeks top stories. style guide. eugeni quitllet is a design industry authority. free fall. skiers who make breakneck moves into movies. culinary stars. the delectable secrets of swiss gourmet chefs. spanish industrial designer eugeni quitllet is constantly looking for new materials and production methods. he has found a winning formula that strikes a balance between form and function. he was even named designer of