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Japan immigration

Abe's cabinet approves plan to accept more foreign workers

New visa legislation faces opposition in parliament after heated debate

Foreign workers train at Seven-Eleven Japan headquarters in Tokyo. (Photo by Minami Inoue)

TOKYO -- Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe's cabinet on Friday approved legislation to admit more foreign workers to the country after a series of heated exchanges in parliament a day earlier.

Proposed as a remedy to Japan's severe labor shortage, the plan will create two visa categories. One is designed for unskilled workers who can stay alone for five years and with no possibility of extension. The other is for skilled people, and will allow them to bring their families and extend their stay.

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