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Press Conference by the Chief Cabinet Secretary

March 9, 2017 (PM)

If you can not view the video,click here(Japanese Government Internet TV)
This video's audio is a provisional translation through live simultaneous interpretation.

Press Conference by the Chief Cabinet Secretary (Excerpt)

[Provisional Translation]

Q&As

REPORTER: I have a question regarding Japan-ROK relations. Tomorrow, the Constitutional Court of Korea  is expected to render its judgment on whether or not the impeachment of President Park Geun-hye is appropriate. It will mark a turning point for the political situation in the Republic of Korea (ROK). I gather that it could also have major implications for future Japan-ROK relations. What is the Japanese Government’s assessment of the situation?

CHIEF CABINET SECRETARY SUGA: As this matter pertains to the domestic affairs and a judicial ruling in the ROK, I believe the Government should refrain from making any comment.

REPORTER: I have a related question. It is a follow-up question to yesterday’s. Amid this situation, some concerns are being expressed over the fact that the Japanese Ambassador to the ROK is not in the ROK and the timing of his return  is still undecided. Can you once again explain how the Government intends to respond to this matter?

CHIEF CABINET SECRETARY SUGA: As I have stated from the beginning, we will make a decision comprehensively, taking into account the various circumstances. Our intention remains entirely unchanged.

REPORTER: I would like to ask a question in connection with the previous question. Depending on tomorrow’s outcome, I would think it will have significant implications for the ROK and other countries. What are your thoughts on the possibility of the outcome playing a factor in the determination of the timing of the Japanese Ambassador’s return?

CHIEF CABINET SECRETARY SUGA: While I do not mean to keep reiterating this, the Government will make a decision comprehensively, taking into account the various circumstances.

(Abridged)

REPORTER: I would like to change the subject. I have a question concerning the Monthly Labour Survey . Fixed wage, which is the equivalent of basic pay, was 238,737 yen, up 0.8% year-on-year, according to the Monthly Labour Survey for January released by the Ministry of Health, Labour and Welfare. The growth percentage was the largest in 16 years and 10 months. Can you please share the comments of the Government?

CHIEF CABINET SECRETARY SUGA: According to the preliminary results of the Monthly Labour Survey for January that were released today, real wages were at the same level year-on-year, whereas nominal wages have been on an upward trend since spring 2014, increasing by 0.5% year-on-year. In addition, I have been briefed that fixed wage was up 0.8% year-on-year to record the highest growth in 16 years and 10 months. The Abe administration considers that wage increases hold the key to sustaining a strong positive cycle of the economy. Therefore, we have been making utmost efforts to develop an environment for the realization of wage increases. Against this backdrop, frankly the Government is pleased that the upward trend in wages is continuing. As the spring wage offensive goes into full-swing, this year, too, the Government hopes that this year’s spring wage offensive achieves at least a wage increase of the same level as last year, as well as a base pay increase for the fourth consecutive year.

(Abridged)


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