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Yomiuri poll finds that 55% support lower tax rate on food

  • 2015-12-21 15:00:00
  • , Yomiuri
  • Translation

(Yomiuri: December 19, 2015 – p. 1)


 The Yomiuri Shimbun conducted a spot opinion poll on Dec. 17–18 after the decision by the Liberal Democratic Party and Komeito to introduce reduced tax rates when the consumption tax is raised to 10% in April 2017. The survey found that 55% of respondents “approve” of the decision to apply reduced tax rates to “food in general,” excluding alcoholic beverages and eating out, exceeding the 38% who “do not approve.” Respondents were split over the decision to apply reduced tax rates to takeout food and food delivery services, with 45% “approving” and 45% “not approving.” This result seems to be because the exact distinction [between the items subject to reduced rates and those not] is hard to understand.


 Pollees “approving” the decision to apply reduced tax rates to regular-subscription newspapers delivered to homes, etc. came in at 59%, exceeding the 34% “not approving.” It is believed this is because newspapers are broadly recognized as providing a public benefit and as necessary. The question of whether to apply reduced tax rates to books and other publications will continue to be studied, and the poll found that public opinion on this matter is divided, with 45% “agreeing” that publications should be subject to reduced tax rates and 45% “not agreeing.”


 The tax relief on food will mean a loss of roughly 1 trillion yen in revenue, and it was decided that provisions for permanent funding would be made by the end of fiscal 2016. The poll found respondents split on this issue, with 42% saying “the decision should have been made this time,” and 40% saying “it was not necessary to decide this time.” Turning to the approval rating of the Abe cabinet, 49% support the cabinet, about the same as in the previous poll (48%) conducted on Dec. 4–6. The nonsupport rate was 39% (40% in the previous poll).


 When asked whether they approve of the introduction of a system where married couples are allowed to use the surnames they used before marriage if they so desire, 51% of pollees said that they “do not approve,” exceeding the 41% who said they “approve.”

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