Japan's new leader Mr.
SV TOKYO: New leader of Japan's Liberal Democratic Party, Zenko Suzuki, leaving house, and surrounded by newsmen. (3 SHOTS)
CU Suzuki walking towards car. (2 SHOTS)
SV TILT UP Japanese sign on wall TO headquarters of Liberal Democratic Party building.
GV INTERIOR Suzuki enters and takes his seat in headquarters.
GV Chairman of Diet introducing Suzuki who stands and is applauded. He bows to Speaker and to other members.
SV Mr. Suzuki making speech in Japanese.
TV Members applaud as Mr. Suzuki bows, walks towards other party members, and bows to each.
GV Delegate leaving hall.
CU Suzuki sits down at new conference and ZOOM TO CU Suzuki.
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Background: Japan's new leader Mr. Zenko Suzuki, has been putting together his new cabinet which he was to announce after being officially declared Prime Minister by the Japanese Parliament on Thursday (17 July). Mr. Suzuki was elected head of the Liberal Democratic Party on Monday (14 July), as the successor to Masayoshi Ohira, who died on the twelfth of June.
SYNOPSIS: The sixty-nine-year-old former Agriculture Minister has a reputation for directness. His nickname is "Buddha" because, it's said, he never loses his temper. His colleagues call him "Zenko-San". They say he is a brilliant negotiator, with great abilities in reconciling opposing viewpoints. Mr. Suzuki was on his way on Monday (14 July) to be elected President of the ruling Liberal Democratic Party, with the Prime Minister's office as the next logical step.
Mr. Suzuki first entered parliament as a member of the Japan Socialist Party in 1947. Two years later, he joined the LDP. He sat impassively with the party's executive, while the LDP's four-hundred-and-twenty-four MPs acclaimed him president.
Many regard him as the man to heal the rifts in the party after a decade of squabbling. In his first speech as president, he said he would revitalise democracy within the party, carry out fair appointments, and strive for unity and harmony. Towards this end, he would offer senior Cabinet or party posts to the two leadership rivals who had stepped aside form him.
Mr. Suzuki has little direct experience with foreign policy and economic affairs. Before becoming leader, he vowed to pursue Mr. Ohira's foreign policy, based on firm ties with the United States, stronger relations with China, and moving towards better understanding with western Europe.
Observers predict his administration will try to patch up strained relations with the Soviet Union. Mr. Suzuki inherits an economy hard hit by oil price rises that have plunged Japan's big trade surplus into a deficit, as well as triggering a faster rate of inflation.