Japan's ruling camp certain to lose majority of upper house

08:18, July 12, 2010      

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Japanese Prime Minister Naoto Kan, who is also head of the ruling Democratic Party of Japan (DPJ), attends a press conference at the party election campaign headquarters in Tokyo on July 11, 2010. Japan's ruling coalition, headed by DPJ, is certain to lose the majority of seats in the upper house in Sunday's election. The opposition camp, led by the Liberal Democratic Party (LDP), secured more than half of the 121 seats up for grabs. (Xinhua/Ji Chunpeng)

Japan's ruling coalition, headed by the Democratic Party of Japan (DPJ), is certain to lose the majority of seats in the upper house in Sunday's election, broadcaster NHK reported.

The Liberal Democratic Party (LDP), the main opposition, is sure to garner the most seats of 121 up for grabs.

The DPJ will remain in power because the party is controlling the more powerful lower house, or the House of Representatives.

The vote counting is under way and full official results are due out in the early hours Monday.

The upper house election is the first national poll since the Democratic Party of Japan (DPJ) rose to power last September. A total of 437 candidates are contesting for the 121 seats in this year's election. The ruling coalition needs to win at least 56 seats to retain a majority in the upper house.

The result of the election is going to have a great impact on whether the ruling coalition can pass bills smoothly.

During the campaign which started in late June, the ruling and opposition parties had engaged in hot debates over issues including a possible consumption tax hike and economic growth strategies.

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