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Press Conference by the Chief Cabinet Secretary

September 21, 2016 (PM)

If you can not view the video,click here(Japanese Government Internet TV)
Simultaneous interpretation services for this video are provided by a third party.

Press Conference by the Chief Cabinet Secretary (Excerpt)

[Provisional Translation]


REPORTER: Today the Monetary Policy Meeting of the Bank of Japan (BOJ) has decided to introduce a new policy framework, seeking to guide the long-term interest rate to a level of zero percent. Some people have expressed the opinion that such an interest rate target policy is unorthodox. Can I ask for the Government’s thoughts on the decision made by the BOJ concerning this policy?

CHIEF CABINET SECRETARY SUGA: With regard to the financial policy of the BOJ announced today, I am aware that some people have observed that there was insufficient dialogue with markets. My thoughts are that the BOJ engaged in a comprehensive assessment, including on the merits and demerits of a negative interest rate policy and provided a detailed explanation to accompany its assessment. In terms of the framework for strengthening monetary easing, the Government welcomes the fact that it will continue to be expanded, including the control of long-term interest rates and the expansion of the monetary base until the year-on-year rate of increase in the observed consumer price index (CPI) exceeds the price stability target of 2 percent.

REPORTER: I have a related question. The BOJ decided to postpone any further expansion of its negative interest rate policy and this has resulted in a large rally on the Tokyo stock exchange. What are your thoughts on how the decision to day will help to accelerate Abenomics?

CHIEF CABINET SECRETARY SUGA: Exiting deflation and achieving sustainable growth are important policy challenges that are shared by the Government and the BOJ. The Government therefore expects that the BOJ will take the necessary measures towards achieving the price stability target of two percent and we will work together closely with the BOJ towards that objective.

REPORTER: I have a question concerning North Korea. The G7 Foreign Ministers’ Meeting held in New York has ended with the announcement of a statement that condemns North Korea’s nuclear test and missile launches and expresses the determination of the G7 countries to take further significant measures. I believe that continuing cooperation with non-G7 countries such as China and Russia will be the key to realizing a new resolution by the United Nations Security Council (UNSC) that will further strengthen UN sanctions against North Korea. Based on the content of this latest statement, what further actions will the Government take to approach other nations?

CHIEF CABINET SECRETARY SUGA: The recent G7 Foreign Ministers’ Statement on Recent Developments in Asia condemns in the strongest terms North Korea’s nuclear test and the increasing number of ballistic missile launches. It also stresses the determination of the G7 to take further significant measures in effective response to provocations by North Korea. It also urges North Korea to immediately respond to the concerns of the international community, including a resolution of the abductions issue. As such, the statement sends a strong message to North Korea. As you noted, in order to strengthen pressure on North Korea the role of Russia and China will be critical and in cooperation with the G7 countries Japan will continue to call on Russia and China, as permanent members of the UNSC, to play a constructive role. We will also continue to work with other countries concerned in urging North Korea to refrain from provocative actions and fully comply with relevant UNSC resolutions.

REPORTER: I have a related question. The Korean Central News Agency (KNCA) of North Korea announced yesterday that the test of a newly-developed type of high-powered engine for a carrier rocket for a geo-stationary satellite was successfully carried out. This could lead to the launch of a so-called satellite, which Japan and the Republic of Korea (ROK) consider to be in actual fact a ballistic missile. Given that North Korea is persisting in such provocative actions, how will the Government respond, including in terms of its own sanctions against North Korea?

CHIEF CABINET SECRETARY SUGA: Japan has already decided to implement its own measures against North Korea and the Government seeks to implement such measures to have the maximum effect. With regard to the press report that you mentioned, the Government closely monitors the missile-related situation in North Korea with great interest, and we constantly strive to gather and analyze information. I would like to refrain from making any comment about specific details due to the nature of the matter.

REPORTER: There are reports that the Government has decided to hold an inaugural symposium on the protection of intellectual property (IP) in the autumn next year, inviting judicial bodies from the countries of the Association of South-East Asian Nations (ASEAN), China and the Republic of Korea (ROK) to attend. Could you tell us whether these reports are true, and if so, what is the Government’s aim in holding such a symposium?

CHIEF CABINET SECRETARY SUGA: Firstly, with regard to the facts of the matter, I have received a report that in autumn next year the Ministry of Justice, Supreme Court, Intellectual Property High Court and the Japan Federation of Bar Associations are planning to invite to Japan judges in charge of IP cases in the countries of ASEAN, China and the ROK, for the purpose of holding mock trials based on patent disputes and also discussing each country’s trademark laws and their enforcement. It is anticipated that this event will help to improve the level of protection for IP in Asian countries and play an extremely important role in the overseas expansion of Japanese businesses.

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