Oops. Ms. Merkel should have waited one more day.
On September 18, as Jiji Press (English) reported the Chancellor's comments on September 17:
Vienna, Sept. 17 (Jiji Press)--German Chancellor Angela Merkel welcomed on Monday a new strategy of the Japanese government to lower dependence on nuclear power to zero in the 2030s.
Merkel said at a news conference in Berlin that she expresses respect for Japan's decision and that she hopes the two nations will strengthen cooperation in converting to renewable energy sources.
Since the nuclear accident in March 2011 at Tokyo Electric Power Co.'s <9501> Fukushima No. 1 power plant, Germany has worked closely with Japan on energy policy, Merkel said.
She said Germany is pleased to continue cooperation with Japan and that Japan must be looking for stronger cooperation.
The chancellor said Germany hopes to share information with Japan on energy efficiency, the introduction of renewable energy and the expansion of power grids.
But one day later on September 19, the same Jiji Tsushin (Japanese) first reported:
Zero Nuke is "Not in the Cabinet document", says Minister of Economy, Trade and Industry Edano
In the press conference after the cabinet meeting on September 19, Yukio Edano, Minister of Economy, Trade and Industry said that the new energy and environmental strategy that aims at zero nuclear power plant operating in 2030s "is not mentioned in the document for the cabinet decision, but it was authorized in the cabinet meeting."
If you scratch your head and wonder aloud what the hell Mr. Edano meant, here's the minister in charge of national strategy, no less:
The administration put off the cabinet decision on the new energy strategy
Yoshihisa Furukawa, minister in charge of national strategy, said that the cabinet decision on the new energy strategy had been put off.
So, with the Keidanren's chairman threatening to resign from the national strategy council over the zero nuke policy and IAEA expressing doubts about the implication of zero nuke on the production of plutonium, the Noda administration simply drops the zero nuke strategy which they embraced reluctantly anyway to win popularity in the coming Lower House election.
And guess what. Prime Minister Yoshihiko Noda is expected to win the Democratic Party of Japan's leadership election in a landslide.