The Japanese conservative party which was ousted just three years ago for the first time in modern Japanese history, is about to comfortably win the recently called. This http://www.guardian.co.uk/world/2012/dec/14/japan-conservatives-election-ldp-shinzo-abe” target=”_blank”>Guardian article indicates that the primary impetus is softness towards China in the recent Senkaku border dispute.
He is more nationalistic and looks prepared to take a harder line against China, though how much of that is campaign rhetoric is unknown.
The implications of this would primarily be greater damage to Sino-Japanese trade, though if the hard line does (unlikely) make China concede the islands, the energy advantages for Japan are not insubstantial. However, again, the greater trade between the two nations looks set to worsen should Abe take power. In light of other provocations such as the Chinese plane or North Korean rocket, it is also difficult to imagine Abe as being completely rhetorical in his words. Likely, boycotts will continue, Japanese companies will close factories, and possibly, Japan may have to look elsewhere for a primary regional trade partner.