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Press Conference by the Chief Cabinet Secretary

Wednesday, September 4, 2013 (AM)

Press Conference by the Chief Cabinet Secretary (Excerpt)

[Provisional Translation]


  • The consumption tax
  • Tokyo's bid to host the 2020 Olympic and Paralympic Games
  • LDP Vice- President Komura's visit to Iran

REPORTER: I would like to ask a question regarding the consumption tax. Yesterday, Minister Amari stated that the Prime Minister will make a decision as early as October 1 or 2. In the past, you had said it will be before the extraordinary Diet session. Is my understanding correct that the timing has been moved quite a bit forward?

CHIEF CABINET SECRETARY SUGA: With regard to the consumption tax, I have stated from before that the Prime Minister will make a decision before the extraordinary Diet session in the context of taking into consideration various economic indexes, such as the 2Q estimate for April to June of this year. The Prime Minister places foremost priority on breaking out of the deflation which has continued for 15 years. At the same time, the Prime Minister is intent on resolving this issue while also keeping in mind the achievement of fiscal consolidation. Due to the extreme importance of this matter, the Prime Minister has just heard a variety of opinions from 60 experts. Taking these factors into account, I have long continued to state that it will be before the extraordinary Diet session. I believe it will be before the extraordinary Diet session.


REPORTER: The Prime Minister will soon be departing Japan to attend the G20 and the International Olympic Committee (IOC) Session. Can you once again explain what your personal take is regarding the current situation with regard to Tokyo's bid to host the Tokyo Olympics?

CHIEF CABINET SECRETARY SUGA: I believe the people of Japan have high interest and hopes regarding Tokyo's bid to host the Olympics. The host city will be determined in the early morning of September 8. At this present stage, I believe the passion that Japan attaches to its bid to host the Olympics has been fully conveyed to each IOC member through our bidding activities to date. However, as the IOC members will be voting individually, we cannot say anything with certainty about the voting behavior of the respective members. In any case, I believe we need to put in all of our efforts up to the very end. Therefore, Prime Minister Abe himself will attend the IOC Session and make the final appeal to the IOC members as one of the presenters. I believe until the very last moment when the host city is determined, we need to make every effort and an all-Japan effort for Tokyo to be able to host the Olympics.


REPORTER: I have a question related to the Olympics. In carrying out the bidding activities, I believe Japan has emphasized its safety and other such aspects. Can you please share your thoughts, if you have any, on what would be effective aspects to appeal and the effective way to do this for Japan to win the bid?

CHIEF CABINET SECRETARY SUGA: Japan indeed is one of the safest and most secure cities  in the entire world - not just Tokyo but all of Japan. Furthermore, as Tokyo appealed to the IOC members, Tokyo is prepared to host solid tournaments within a very compact space. Further still, Tokyo does not have any financial problems. While fully appealing these aspects, in order to realize Japan's bid to host the Olympics, we will be asking the team to put all of its efforts until the very last moment.


REPORTER: I understand that Vice-President Komura of the Liberal Democratic Party will be visiting Iran as a Special Envoy of the Prime Minister from the 7th to the 8th. Can you tell us, what is the aim of his visit to Iran as the Special Envoy of the Prime Minister?

CHIEF CABINET SECRETARY SUGA: Vice-President Komura is a former Minister for Foreign Affairs and is a politician extremely well-versed in Iranian affairs. Therefore, I believe that if Vice-President Komura visits Iran as a Special Envoy of the Prime Minister amid the current situation of turmoil, he will be able to fully deal with this matter, including the easing of tensions.

REPORTER: Does the situation in Syria have anything to do with this?

CHIEF CABINET SECRETARY SUGA: Naturally, I predict that the Syria issue will come up during various talks.

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