Photo/Illutration Members of the reshuffled Cabinet of Prime Minister Fumio Kishida gather at the Prime Minister's Official Residence on Aug. 10. (Koichi Ueda)

Prime Minister Fumio Kishida’s reshuffled Cabinet will do little to improve Japan’s woeful global standing regarding gender equality in politics.

Only two women were named to the new Cabinet, including Sanae Takaichi, who previously served as policy chief of the ruling Liberal Democratic Party.

Takaichi’s move to the Cabinet post in charge of economic security means the top four LDP executive posts are all held by men.

The other female Cabinet minister is Keiko Nagaoka, who takes over as education minister.

In the recently released Gender Gap Report 2022 published by the World Economic Forum, Japan ranked 139th out of 146 nations in terms of gender equality in the political sector.

Kishida had appointed three women to his first Cabinet when he took office in autumn last year.

But one of them, Noriko Horiuchi, stepped down as vaccination minister after failing to reply to questions in the Diet concerning the supply of COVID-19 doses.

Since 1996, when the current Lower House electoral system was introduced, most Cabinets have had at most two female ministers.

The record number of five female ministers was set by Junichiro Koizumi in April 2001 and matched by Shinzo Abe in September 2014.

Abe that year said he would focus on giving women greater opportunities to participate in various aspects of society.

After the July 10 Upper House election, the Diet chamber has a record 64 female members out of a total of 248.

But in the more powerful Lower House, women represent less than 10 percent of the total membership of 465.