The aim of this paper is to examine how neoliberalism and internationalization/globalization have emerged in higher education policy in Japan, and to examine whether this situation is real or imaginary, by analyzing the transformation of higher education policy from the 1980s to the present. Both types of reform began to formulate and be implemented since the 1980s, and then changed their aims in the mid-2000s to prioritize inviting foreign students to Japan in order for capacity building. However, subsequently this policy has differentiated into two pathways. One is to invite foreign students in order to foster the future talented labor force in Japan, and the second is to send Japanese students overseas to cultivate them as global human resources. Similarly, neoliberal policies which started in the 1980s came into full swing in the early 2000s. In both domains, under the name of deregulation, educational reform has accelerated since the 1990s.