Abe's Support Rate Steady at 46%

Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe welcomed the New Year by talking about the challenges 2016 will bring. Results of a new NHK poll suggest his popularity hasn't changed since last month.

Around 1,000 people participated in a recent telephone survey.

The Cabinet's support rate stayed the same as last month at 46 percent. The disapproval rate went down 1 point to 35 percent.

Respondents were asked whether they approve of the Abe Cabinet's economic policy and more than half said they do.

The survey also touched on this month's nuclear test by North Korea. More than 80 percent said they are concerned.

Respondents were also asked if they support the agreement Japan and South Korea reached last month on the issue of those referred to as comfort women. Over 60 percent of them said they support it.

However, nearly 60 percent of the respondents said they feel the issue will remain. While less than 10 percent answered it won't.