Japan Appoints Furukawa Space Development Minister
TOKYO — Newly elected Japanese Prime Minister Yoshihiko Noda unveiled his Cabinet appointments Sept. 2, naming 44-year-old Motohisa Furukawa as Japan’s latest state minister for space development.
Furukawa replaces Koichiro Gemba, who will serve as Japan’s new foreign minister.
Noda is Japan’s fifth prime minister in six years. He was chosen by parliament Aug. 30 to replace Noato Kan, who resigned several days earlier.
Furukawa will hold a total of three posts in the Noda government. In addition to space development, Furukawa will also serve as national strategy minister and state minister for economic and fiscal policy. A graduate of the University of Tokyo, Furukawa joined the Ministry of Finance in 1988, and attended Columbia University’s School of International and Public Affairs as a ministry official in 1993. Leaving the ministry in 1994, he took part in the formation of the Democratic Party of Japan in 1996 and was elected to the House of Representatives for the first time in the same year; he is currently serving his fourth term in the House.