Ruling coalition looks set to retain majority in upper house

The Liberal Democratic Party and its ruling coalition partner Komeito looked certain to win more than a majority of the seats being contested in the House of Councillors election on Sunday, according to Yomiuri Shimbun exit polls.

Including the seats the coalition already holds, the ruling bloc appeared assured of retaining its majority in the 248-seat chamber.

There were 124 seats up for grabs to fill six-year terms in the upper house, plus one vacancy that will be filled to serve out the remaining three years of that seat.

Polls closed at 8 p.m.

After making gains in the House of Representatives election last autumn, Nippon Ishin no Kai (Japan Innovation Party) looks set to increase its seats in the upper house beyond the six that it was defending.