Keidanren chief Nakanishi to resign in June

Yomiuri Shimbun file photo
Hiroaki Nakanishi

Keidanren Chairman Hiroaki Nakanishi, 75, has decided to step down on June 1, according to the lobby, which is also known as the Japan Business Federation.

Sumitomo Chemical Co. Chairman Masakazu Tokura, 70, has been tapped to take over the post.

Yomiuri Shimbun file photo
Masakazu Tokura

Nakanishi, who is also chairman of Hitachi, Ltd., took office as Keidanren chairman in 2018. He was hospitalized in 2019 after falling ill and was diagnosed with lymphoma. Last summer, during his second term at the helm of Keidanren, he relapsed and worked remotely from the hospital where he was receiving treatment.

In April this year, Nakanishi missed a Keidanren press conference because of his illness. Nakanishi’s health is thought to be behind the unorthodox decision for a Keidanren chairman to step down in the middle of his term.

As chairman of Keidanren, Nakanishi stopped the formulation of rules regarding the new graduate recruitment calendar. He has also encouraged the appointment of female executives, and promoted the digitization of society.