Home >  News >  Press Conference by the Chief Cabinet Secretary >  September 2013 >  Thursday, September 5, 2013 (PM)

Press Conference by the Chief Cabinet Secretary

Thursday, September 5, 2013 (PM)

Press Conference by the Chief Cabinet Secretary (Excerpt)

[Provisional Translation]


  • Tokyo's bid to host the Olympics and the contaminated water issue
  • The Confidential Information Security Act
  • The Momentary Policy Meeting of the Bank of Japan

REPORTER: I have a question concerning the contaminated water. Today President Takeda of the Japanese Olympic Committee (JOC) held the first press conference in Buenos Aires, where the International Olympic Committee (IOC) Session will take place. Four of the six questions asked by foreign media representatives concerned the issue of the contaminated water, which once again highlights the high international interest that this issue commands. How does the administration view this situation?

CHIEF CABINET SECRETARY SUGA: Firstly, I am aware that these questions were asked. As the Prime Minister stated the other day in relation to the issue of contaminated water, in order to identify the fundamental cause of the issue and enable swift resolution, the Government will bring together the technology and knowledge that Japan possesses and come to the fore to resolve this issue. Therefore, I believe that we have nothing to be worried about. In fact, following the accident Japan has introduced the world's most rigid standards for food and water and carries out thorough testing and distribution management. The annual radiation exposure in Fukushima is below one-hundredth of one mSv and I believe that the safety of food and water in Japan is completely assured. Furthermore, the impact that the contaminated water has on the ocean is contained within a 0.3 km2 area of the bay near the Fukushima Daiichi Nuclear Power Station. Japan monitors radiation levels in waters close to Japan and we have confirmed that the level is well within limits. We would very much like to host the 2020 Olympic and Paralympic Games in Tokyo and we would like to welcome athletes from across the globe, other related individuals and many visitors, fully prepared in terms of meals, accommodation and safety with hospitality that only Japan can provide. It is my strong hope that the 2020 Tokyo Olympic bid will be successful.

REPORTER: Please allow me to ask another question on this topic. I am fully aware that there are still people displaced from their homes, but in Tokyo the disaster does not impact our daily lives any longer; our food and day to day activities are unaffected, however it appears that the foreign media has been overreacting. What do you think are the reasons for this gap between reality and what is being reported?

CHIEF CABINET SECRETARY SUGA: I understand that this can be attributed to Japan's deficiencies in public relations and communication. For those of us living in Japan, we are going about our daily lives without concern for radiation, however I can understand that from an outsider's point of view, it raises concerns, and I therefore acknowledge that it is necessary for us to communicate effectively that Japan is indeed safe.


REPORTER: In relation to the Confidential Information Security Act, New Komeito party leader Yamaguchi during today's press conference stated that the Government failed to provide an explanation of the Act to the appropriate department of the party. He also stated that it is important that both parties come to agreement after deliberating on the Act but criticized the fact that in reality this is not occurring, saying that it is a vital process of the coalition Government. Could you share with us how you are addressing this issue and the explanation you have provided to New Komeito?

CHIEF CABINET SECRETARY SUGA: I have spoken with the secretariat of the office to closely investigate what explanations have been provided to New Komeito thus far. We will continue to provide detailed and thorough explanations so as to gain their understanding.

REPORTER: I would like to ask another question on the same topic concerning the event that I believe took place yesterday. I believe that yesterday, or the day before yesterday, an overview of the Act was released on the Cabinet Secretariat website. There has also been an appeal for public comment on the Act. I understand that New Komeito was not notified of this in advance, so could you share with us how you are addressing the issue?

CHIEF CABINET SECRETARY SUGA: I have been hearing from the secretariat of the office on this issue. I believe that first and foremost we must gain the understanding of our coalition party, New Komeito. I am aware that we must provide thorough explanations, so I have instructed the secretariat to do so.

REPORTER: The Monetary Policy Meeting of the Bank of Japan held today made an upward revision of the state of the economy for the first time in two months. Could you share with us your personal thoughts on this and how you believe this upward revision will influence the decision of the Prime Minister with regard to the consumption tax hike?

CHIEF CABINET SECRETARY SUGA: This upward revision is extremely welcome news and I believe that it shows that Abenomics, or the policies centered on the "three arrows", have gradually begun to take effect. We will further accelerate these policies so as to build an economic environment in which the economy can achieve sustained recovery. As for the decision in relation to consumption tax increase, the Prime Minister recently conducted hearings and interviews with approximately 60 individuals. Our intension to come to a conclusion before the Extraordinary Diet Session begins, while examining the various economic indicators available, has not changed at all.

Page Top

Related Link