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Japan lawmakers’ average income in 2018 hits 16-year high

  • July 8, 2019
  • , Kyodo News , 12:22 p.m.
  • English Press

TOKYO — Japanese lawmakers’ income averaged 26.57 million yen ($245,000) in 2018, the highest in 16 years and up 2.45 million yen from a year before, parliamentary data showed Monday.


The average was inflated by the 1.74 billion yen income reported by Jiro Hatoyama, a House of Representatives member of the ruling Liberal Democratic Party. Without his income, the average lawmaker’s earnings were similar to last year’s.


Hatoyama, 40, got the bulk of his income — 1.66 billion yen — through sales of unlisted stocks. He is the second son of the late internal affairs minister Kunio Hatoyama.


The top nine earners were all from the LDP, which is led by Prime Minister Shinzo Abe. Abe’s income totaled 40.28 million yen.


The second highest earner was Taichiro Motoe, an LDP member of the House of Councillors and former lawyer. Motoe, 43, reported almost 500 million yen in income, most of it from selling shares in a company where he is representative director and chairman.


Ichiro Aisawa, 65, an LDP lower house member, took third spot at 311.66 million yen, with 207.51 million earned from sales of stock in a family-owned company. He was the top earner in 2017 at 711.93 million yen.


Among the 97 female lawmakers who submitted their income, Seiko Noda, 59, topped the list at 30.47 million. The LDP lower house budget committee chairwoman was 50th in the overall ranking.


The parliamentary data covered 457 members of the 465-seat lower house and 241 members of the 242-seat upper house who had seats in the Diet throughout 2018.


Lower house members’ income averaged 27.58 million yen while the figure for upper house members was 24.65 million yen.


LDP members had the highest average earnings of all parties at 30.16 million yen. The Democratic Party for the People was next with members’ income averaging 22 million yen.


Members who submitted additional information detailing their income increases through real estate and savings, among other reasons, numbered 187 during 2018.


As of April 1, those reporting remuneration from business activities and organizations numbered 173 individuals.

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