Japan Ruling Party's Policy Platform For Dec Poll

by
Reuters
Japan's ruling Democratic Party (DPJ), unveiled its election manifesto on Tuesday, vowing to defend the nation's interests with "cool-headed" and "practical" diplomacy to contrast with the hawkish rhetoric of its main opposition rivals.

Japan's ruling Democratic Party (DPJ), unveiled its election manifesto on Tuesday, vowing to defend the nation's interests with "cool-headed" and "practical" diplomacy to contrast with the hawkish rhetoric of its main opposition rivals.

Following are key points from the DPJ's campaign platform:

FOREIGN POLICY AND SECURITY

- Promote "cool-headed" and "practical" foreign diplomacy and defence, and deepen an alliance between Japan and the United States.

- Do utmost to protect Japanese territory by expanding and strengthening guarding and surveillance carried out mainly by Japan's Coast Guard.

- Strengthen relationships with countries of the Asia-Pacific region such as China, Korea, ASEAN nations, India, Australia and Russia.

ECONOMY

- Compile a large-scale extra budget at the beginning of 2013 for seamless economic policy to beat deflation and boost the economy.

- Aim to achieve average annual nominal economic growth of about 3 percent and real growth of 2 percent by the fiscal year 2020/21 by focusing on green energy, healthcare and agriculture areas, and speeding up trade partnerships to tap growing overseas markets.

- Continue regulatory and institutional reforms in areas such as energy, healthcare and farming.

- Set up an environment where corporations including small-and-medium-sized firms can develop business by reviewing tax system, regulations and support for locating.

- Do the utmost to beat deflation in cooperation with the Bank of Japan based on the joint statement issued in October 2012. Aim to beat deflation by the fiscal year 2014/15.

- Take decisive steps against excessive yen's strength and rapid currency moves reflecting the view sharp yen rises are harmful to the economy.

- Speed up reconstruction in the areas hit by the 2011 earthquake, tsunami and nuclear crisis by strengthening the reconstruction agency, special economic zones and through subsidies.

- Allocate all the revenue from sales tax increases to financing of the social security while adopting measures to ease the burden imposed on low-income earners.

- Halve Japan's primary budget deficits by the fiscal 2015/16 and achieve primary a budget surplus by fiscal 2020/21.

SPENDING CUTS AND SAVINGS

- Introduce a law that will require ministries and government agencies to carry out annual reviews of public projects with the view of cutting wasteful spending.

- Reduce the number of parliamentary seats by cutting 75 of 480 lower house seats and 40 in the 242-member upper house during the next ordinary parliamentary session.

TRADE

- Pursue the U.S.-led free trade pact, the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP), in parallel with free trade among Japan, Korea and China, and the Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership.

- In doing so, protect Japan's agriculture, food safety and universal health-care system based on a premise to protect national interests.

ENERGY POLICY

- Employ all the policy resources available to make it possible to put an end to nuclear power generation by the 2030s.

- Deregulate the utility sector including possibly "unbundling" regional utilities' control of power generation and transmission of electricity.

- Compile a plan within 2012 to secure safe decommissioning of nuclear reactors damaged by the natural disaster and thorough safety checks of nuclear reactors which Japan restarted after the disaster.