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Press Conference by the Chief Cabinet Secretary

Tuesday, June 25, 2013 (AM)

Press Conference by the Chief Cabinet Secretary (Excerpt)

[Provisional Translation]

Opening Statement by Chief Cabinet Secretary Suga

  • An overview of the Cabinet meeting

CHIEF CABINET SECRETARY SUGA: I would like to give an overview of the Cabinet meeting. The meeting approved 14 general and other measures, the promulgation of laws, cabinet orders, and personnel decisions. With regard to statements by ministers, the Minister of Economy, Trade and Industry made a statement concerning the Contract Policy of the Government regarding Small and Medium Enterprises in FY2013. The Minister of Land, Infrastructure, Transport and Tourism made a statement concerning the Comprehensive Logistics Policy Outline (2013-2017). Minister Mori made a statement concerning the Annual Report on Government Measures for Persons with Disabilities and the Declining Birthrate Measures White Paper. The Minister of Education, Culture, Sports, Science and Technology and Minister Yamamoto made a statement concerning the Annual Report on the Promotion of Science and Technology, FY2012. The Minister for Internal Affairs and Communications made a statement concerning a report pursuant to the provisions of Article 106-25, Paragraph 1, etc. of the National Public Service Act. The Minister of Economy, Trade and Industry made a statement concerning the White Paper on International Economy and Trade 2013. The Minister for Internal Affairs and Communications made a statement concerning the findings of the evaluation on policy for promoting work-life balance. The Minister for Foreign Affairs made a statement concerning the treatment of the Official Working Visit to Japan of Her Excellency Ms. Rousseff, President of the Federative Republic of Brazil.

In ministerial discussions following the Cabinet meeting, Minister Mori made a statement concerning initiatives to promote the active participation of female national public servants.


  • A half-year since the inauguration of the administration
  • 'Abenomics' effect in local communities
  • Various challenges the administration faces


REPORTER: June 26 will mark a half-year since the inauguration of the administration. Shortly after the inauguration, the Algerian incident took place, among other crisis management issues. The administration also faced many challenges in the areas of diplomacy, issues regarding the understanding of history, and the Abenomics economic policy. Looking back on the past six months, what is your evaluation?

CHIEF CABINET SECRETARY SUGA: To be honest, there is this feeling of "we're already at the half-year mark" and "we're still only at the half-year mark." In any case, I believe these were six months in which, ever since its inauguration, the administration worked single-mindedly and tirelessly towards our goals of revitalizing the Japanese economy, realizing the reconstruction from the Great East Japan Earthquake, and taking all possible crisis management measures. The administration, keeping with the spirit of "results speak louder than words," will continue to work towards these three pillars in order to revitalize Japan into a country where people can live fulfilling and secure lives.

REPORTER: Another question, which slightly overlaps with a question from yesterday. Regarding the issue of ensuring that the ripple effects of Abenomics reach local communities, I would like to once again ask, what is the approach that the Government intends to take specifically? Also, by when do you predict that the ripple effects will be felt in local communities? If you can please also elaborate on your forecast.

CHIEF CABINET SECRETARY SUGA: Well, it's just been exactly half a year since the administration was launched. During that time, in these last six months, we made utmost and concerted efforts towards the revitalization of the Japanese economy, in the form of implementing the three prongs or "arrows" of bold monetary policy, flexible fiscal policy, and growth strategy that encourages private sector investment. Through these efforts, in terms of finances, the yen that was as strong as it was back then is now 97.8 yen to the dollar I believe. Stocks too, while they are in the adjustment phase, have increased in value by approximately 50%. And with regard to various economic indicators, annualized GDP growth was plus 4.1% in this year's January to March quarter, and so I believe the real economy and leading indicators have all been improving. Against this backdrop, it is often said that the impacts have not yet reached local communities. One of our community measures or one of our policies to create dynamic local communities is the allocation of government spending in the draft supplementary budget and the draft regular budget. I believe, based on my experience as a local council member, that it will take five or six months for the policy results to actually reach local communities. They do not immediately reach local communities in an easy process. There are procedures. A law is enacted at the Diet, then at the prefectural council, then at the municipal council, and then programs are set into motion. So while I believe there is indeed a slight time lag, I am confident that this policy will no doubt also bring vitality to local communities.

REPORTER: I'm sorry, one more question. Moving forward, in the context of government administration, the administration will face a plethora of difficult challenges, for example, joining the full-fledged negotiations of the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) and decisions regarding the consumption tax. How will the administration overcome these challenges? If you can please elaborate, including regarding the administration's enthusiasm in this regard.

CHIEF CABINET SECRETARY SUGA: Whether we will overcome them? In short, it is not about what we will do to raise our approval rate. Rather, the basic policy of the administration is to dedicate ourselves to each and every item that needs to be addressed. I believe a variety of issues will emerge successively, beginning with the TPP as you just mentioned. In response to these issues as well, we will tackle them head-on, without any fear, and boldly push through measures as necessary while offering explanations to the people.


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