President Donald Trump will nominate Tennessee businessman William Hagerty, a key member of his transition team, as U.S. ambassador to Japan, the White House said Thursday.
Hagerty, 57, who as director of presidential appointments helped select cabinet members and other administration personnel, is expected to assume the diplomatic post following Senate approval. He will succeed Caroline Kennedy who left Tokyo in January.
Hagerty will handle a host of bilateral issues ranging from the Trump administration’s calls for the further opening of Japan’s automobile and agriculture markets to the stalled relocation of a U.S. military base within Okinawa Prefecture.
Trump has pledged to strengthen the security alliance with Japan, saying it is “the cornerstone of peace and stability in the Pacific region.”
“It is important that both Japan and the United States continue to invest very heavily in the alliance to build up our defense,” Trump said at a joint news conference with Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe after their White House meeting last month.
Trump added the bilateral alliance will be “impenetrable.”
Hagerty has built ties with Japan through a three-year posting to Tokyo around 1990 while working for the Boston Consulting Group, and his work as commissioner of economic development for Tennessee from 2011 to 2015. … (read more)
via Japan Today