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Press Conference by the Chief Cabinet Secretary

October 26, 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: The Liberal Democratic Party (LDP) has decided to extend the maximum term of office for the LDP President to three consecutive terms, or nine years in total. Apparently there were no opposing opinions to this change within the party, so can I ask for your views on this matter?

CHIEF CABINET SECRETARY SUGA: Firstly, I am aware of the decision that has been made. However, I would like to refrain from commenting from a Government standpoint. If I were to add anything further, it would be to note that it is my understanding that as the responsible ruling party, the LDP has considered that there are relatively many major political parties in various countries which do not have a predetermined term of office for their party leader, and even in cases where there are rules in place, there is generally no prohibition of a person seeking reelection. Furthermore, Japan is facing many challenges that require long-term solutions, including the declining birthrate, aging of society and the decreasing population. Although the LDP President must be elected by the party in an election campaign, an even higher hurdle that must be overcome is to win the people’s support in a general election. It is therefore my understanding that the LDP has come to a decision after a process of wide-ranging considerations, which have taken into account global perspectives on forms of leadership.

REPORTER: I have a related question. I believe that it is possible that Prime Minister Abe will seek reelection at the time of the next LDP presidential campaign. What merits do you think that this revision to LDP rules will have in terms of government administration?

CHIEF CABINET SECRETARY SUGA: The administration has to date sought to respond to the trust placed in it by the people of Japan in the general election and will continue to do so. We will continue to concentrate all our efforts into the policy of prioritizing economic revitalization and achieving the dynamic engagement of all citizens in society.


REPORTER: In this year’s Global Gender Gap Report published by the World Economic Forum, Japan has slipped ten places down the rankings to stand at 111th out of 144 countries. Given the Abe administration’s focus on policies targeting women, can I ask for the Government’s reaction to this report?

CHIEF CABINET SECRETARY SUGA: I am aware of the contents of this report. According to the World Economic Forum, the method for calculating estimated earned income has been changed, which is one factor behind Japan’s change in the rankings. On the other hand, however, in the areas of education, health and politics, Japan has risen in the rankings. The Government has been working to promote the active participation of women, perceiving this to be an area of the greatest potential for Japan. Since the start of the Abe administration, the number of women in work has risen by approximately one million people, and the number of women directors on the boards of listed companies has also more than doubled in comparison to the period before the start of the Abe administration. The Government will continue to robustly engage in measures to promote the active participation of women.


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