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The Kyogi Sokwai (キョウギ ソオウクヮイ [協議総會] Kyōgi Sōkwai), literally means “the consultative meeting”, is the usual joint meeting between the Legislative Council and the State Council of Japan to discusses about some important national issues. The Kyogi Sokwai always met at the Main Auditorium of National Congress Building where the National Congress session also usually take place
Powers and functions
Constitutionally, the Kyogi Sokwai only briefly mentioned in the Constitution of Japan in Chapter IV, Article 61:
- "The State Council shall routinely held a consultative meeting with the Legislative Council to discuss upon important matters of State according to the provisions of law."
The Kyogi Sokwai's political functions are only regulated by the series of political conventions developed in Japan since 1946.
In recent time, debates are more often occurred in the Kyogi Sokwai than in the Congress as the Constitution does not limiting the number of sessions for the Kyogi Sokwai. Per one year, the Kyogi Sokwai can convenes more than five times. If necessary, the Legislative Council can demands the presence of Ministers of State before the Kyogi Sokwai and got questioned by all Councillors from both Councils about the matter of government programs.
As the Constitution of Japan never clearly mentioned the National Congress as Japan’s national parliament, the Kyogi Sokwai can being viewed as an "extra-constitutional pseudo-parliament" since the body fulfilled any criterias as an effective national parliament, like the United States Congress or the British Parliament. The active but powerless Kyogi Sokwai counterbalances the ceremonial but constitutionally powerful National Congress in the politics of Japan. As result, Japan often referred as "a country with two parliaments".