Constitutional Problems in the Decision-Making Process Under Pandemic: Precautionary Measures Against Covid-19 in Japan and Germany

Japan has taken various measures against COVID-19, most of which are different from other countries. Germany, for example, has codified much more coercive regulations (obligation to show vaccination certificate, obligation to wear mask, etc.) compared to Japan. To pursue these measures, German law stipulates the organization responsible for providing information which the later decision by government will be based on, while in Japan, the decision-making process is not clear, that interferes with freedom of citizens, including the request to refrain from providing alcoholic beverages. In this presentation, I will first compare the preventive measures of these two countries from the perspective of legal system and draw both the similarities and differences. Finally, I will introduce some recent decisions by the Federal Constitutional Court and other courts, and give suggestions on a way to reconcile freedom and safety during the pandemic.