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Press Conference by the Chief Cabinet Secretary

Wednesday, December 17, 2014 (PM)

Press Conference by the Chief Cabinet Secretary (Excerpt)

[Provisional Translation]


  • The telephone dialogues between Prime Minister Abe and President Obama
  • The visit to the Prime Minister by the heads of the three major economic organization


REPORTER: I believe that around lunchtime today the Prime Minister held telephone dialogues with President Obama of the United States. According to the press sheet that has been issued the two leaders discussed the terrorist attack in Pakistan. Could you tell us about the details of the telephone talks?

CHIEF CABINET SECRETARY SUGA: Although I was not present at the telephone dialogues I have received a report that from noon today for approximately 15 minutes, Prime Minister Abe received a congratulatory telephone call from President Obama. In his opening remarks President Obama stated how impressed he was at the remarkable victory in the recent general election (for the House of Representatives) and praised the Prime Minister for achieving a wonderful result. The President stated that he looked forward to continuing to work with the Prime Minister, calling him “Shinzo.” Prime Minister Abe expressed his appreciation for the President’s comments. The President stated that Prime Minister Abe is a great partner, under whose leadership the Japan-U.S. alliance in the Asia-Pacific region is strong, and that Japan is fulfilling a global role. He noted that although there has been some instability in Japanese politics in recent years, the fact that the Japanese people had expressed their trust in the Abe administration in the election was important not only for Japan but also for the United States. Both leaders agreed to continue to cooperate on issues such as Ebola Virus Disease, the response to the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant, the Trans-Pacific Partnership, and the revision of the Guidelines for Japan-U.S. Defense Cooperation. Prime Minister Abe stated that he would continue to promote Japan-U.S. relations and seek to work closely with the United States on global issues. Both leaders agreed to maintain active cooperative ties between Japan and the U.S. That is the gist of the report I received.

REPORTER: The heads of the three major economic organizations paid a visit to the Prime Minister at the Prime Minister’s Office to convey their policy requests for the third Abe Cabinet. The Prime Minister apparently said to the three organization heads that he has been granted four years in office and would like to assign priorities to various matters and engage in reforms that he had not been able to implement to date. How does the Government view the policy requests that have been received and how do you intend to reflect the requests in actual policies?

CHIEF CABINET SECRETARY SUGA: I understand that this morning the chairpersons of the three major economic organizations and others visited the Prime Minister to present requests concerning economic policy. Following the result of the recent election they requested that the Government continues to engage in measures towards economic revitalization. The Prime Minister responded that he would actively engage in efforts to achieve economic revitalization.

REPORTER: I have a related question. Apparently the policy requests included those relating to corporation tax and opposition to the expansion of the size-based corporation tax system. What are the Government’s thoughts about such requests?

CHIEF CABINET SECRETARY SUGA: I do not believe that the Prime Minister said anything specifically about such matters. He stated that the Government would continue to focus its efforts on economic revitalization.


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