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Abe holds talks with Italian leader

  • May 3, 2016
  • , Asahi, Mainichi, Yomiuri, Nikkei, Sankei, Tokyo Shimbun
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All papers reported from Florence, Italy, that visiting Prime Minister Abe met with his Italian counterpart Renzi on Monday and confirmed the importance of the G7 nations taking a concerted approach to shoring up the global economy by possibly implementing fiscal stimulus measures. Renzi seconded Abe’s opinion that when they assemble in Japan in late May, the G7 leaders must issue a powerful message that they are committed to expediting structural reforms and ready to increase public spending if necessary so as to address the “unforeseeable risks” facing the world economy.

 

On Abe’s insistence that the G7 commit to pump-priming measures involving major fiscal spending, Yomiuri explained that he may run into difficulties in enlisting support from the UK and Germany during the Ise-Shima Summit. The two nations are staunch supporters of an EU rule that limits members’ annual fiscal deficits to 3% of GNP. A GOJ source reportedly said: “Asking them to become fiscally active would be tantamount to demanding a conversion pf faith. It would not be easy.” Nikkei wrote that the European partners do not share Japan’s enthusiasm for active fiscal spending, adding that Abe may be hoping that a G7 consensus on greater fiscal spending would make it easier for him to decide to postpone the planned consumption tax hike.

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