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Gist of Minister Amari’s economic policy speech, Feb. 12

  • 2015-02-13 15:00:00
  • , Sankei
  • Translation

(Sankei: February 13, 2015 – p. 5)

 

 Current state and outlook of Japanese economy

 

 The Japanese economy continues its moderate recovery, but weaknesses, such as in personal consumption, can still be observed. As a result of the reaction to the last-minute demand before the consumption tax hike and poor weather conditions last summer, household income has not always been able to keep pace with price increases. Economic recovery shored up by robust private sector demand is expected in FY2015 in light of continuous improvement in the employment and income conditions, lower oil prices, and other factors.

 

 Short-term economic management

 

 A cabinet decision on emergency economic measures was made in late December. We will work on concrete measures to support consumers and businesses, regional revitalization, and in other areas. The meeting of representatives of government, labor, and management has agreed to make utmost efforts to increase wages. We will strive to continue this wage increase trend this spring and next spring in order to expand the virtuous economic cycle.

 

 Implementation of growth strategy

 

 The growth strategy will be implemented and realized vigorously and speedily. Effective corporate tax rate will be reduced by 2.51% in FY2015, with the aim of lowering to the 20% level in a few years.

 

 Promotion of Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP)

 

 We will make every effort toward an early agreement and to ensure that national interest is reflected in the final result.

 

 Balance between economic revitalization and fiscal health

 

 We will work to sustain the virtuous economic cycle and implement the consumption tax rate increase to 10% without fail. Discussions will be held at the Council on Economic and Fiscal Policy on the goal of achieving a surplus in the primary balance of the national and local governments by FY2020.

 

 Promotion of integrated reform of social security and taxation

 

 Reform will be undertaken from the standpoint of achieving both a stable revenue source for social security and improvement of fiscal health amid the trend of low fertility rate and aging of the population. We will work for greater efficiency and rationalization of medical service and nursing care expenditures. The Council for the Promotion of Social Security System Reform will discuss mid- and long-term reforms.

 

 Conclusion

 

 We will work for a more vigorous virtuous economic cycle. This year will be critical. We will make every effort to promote and develop Abenomics forcefully to enable the benefits of economic recovery to be felt in every corner of the country.

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