Hon. Seiji Maehara is the member of the House of Representatives of Japan. He currently sits as senior director of the Committee on Budget. His past committee assignments include: Minister of State for National Policy, Minister for Foreign Affairs, Minister of Land, Infrastructure, Transport and Tourism, as well as President of the Democratic Party of Japan. He was first elected to the House of Representatives in July 1993, and is now serving his eighth term. Hon. Seiji Maehara was elected to Kyoto Prefectural Assembly at the age of 28 after he graduated from the Department of International Politics, Faculty of Law, Kyoto University and the Matsushita Institute of Government and Management. His main political themes are diplomacy, security, financial reconstruction, and development of transport and infrastructure projects abroad, including high-speed rail.