>> Donald Trump prepping for his first big step into the world of foreign diplomacy, a meeting with Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe in New York on Thursday. Trump's victory has left some in Tokyo worried about the future of a long standing alliance, but Abe's advisors say this first meeting will be less about hammering out policy differences, and more about getting to know each other.
Reuter's Linda Sieg says there's reason to hope the two will hit it off.>> They, perhaps, share somewhat of a worldview, both have vowed to make their country great again, to improve its standing on the global stage. Both have concerns about the rise of China, and both would like to improve relations with Russia.
So there's potential for a common ground, and it is possible that the chemistry may be there for a good relationship.>> One potential bone of contention between the two, is defense. Trump has said it's high time Japan gets it's own nuclear weapons, and paid more for the upkeep of US forces on its soil.
Though he now seems to be easing off that message.>> An advisor to Trump, has said that the President-elect will try to reassure Japan, and other Asian allies, about his commitment to the Asian region. I think the concern on the Japanese side, and other Asian allies, is that a weakening of US commitment to the region, would make it more difficult to cope with the rise of an increasingly assertive China.
>> Trump's victory has also dashed hopes for the Trans-Pacific Partnership trade deal, a lynchpin of Washington's pivot to Asia, and a pillar of Abe's economic reforms. The US President-elect has threatened to kill the deal. Tokyo insiders say, during this first meeting at least, Abe will be approaching the subject with care, but is not ready to give up on it.