politics

Abe says no need to raise sales tax beyond 10% for decade

66 Comments
By Tetsushi Kajimoto

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66 Comments
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dry that one out and you could fertilize a lot of lawns, election coming by chance?

19 ( +19 / -0 )

Butt-head!!! The consumption tax was raised from 5% to 8% under your watch in April 2014, now you are jacking it to 10% 5 1/2 years later to 10% and you have the nerve to even suggest that it may need to rise again, whether it be 10 years later or not?

Butt-head!!!

17 ( +21 / -4 )

The Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) earlier this year suggested Japan's sales tax needed to rise to as much as 26% 

OECD should keep out of Japan, 26% tax is Socialism, and will never be accepted. Good for PM Abe and Japan.

-19 ( +8 / -27 )

I don't believe him.

22 ( +22 / -0 )

dry that one out and you could fertilize a lot of lawns, election coming by chance?

Those would be some beautiful lawns.

11 ( +11 / -0 )

Hahaha! Yeah, right...

They’ll just add other taxes like the Tohoku reconstruction one or the new special tax.

19 ( +19 / -0 )

OECD should keep out of Japan, 26% tax is Socialism, and will never be accepted. Good for PM Abe and Japan.

You are already living in a socialist democracy here in Japan, and whether you are smart enough to realize it or not (guessing not) taxes here are already high, particularly in relationship to the services that the government provides in return.

Japan has swallowed Abe's increasing taxes TWICE now (consumption tax) and Abe is looking to get spanked at the upcoming elections because of it!

15 ( +18 / -3 )

Individuals go broke easily when they are debt ridden while the government not.

5 ( +5 / -0 )

Yes, Abe is right! After another decade of being over taxed and underpaid Japan will have achieved its goal of disbanding the middle classes and taking the society back 200 years to the ruling class and slave class.

18 ( +18 / -0 )

In a sense, tax is rubbery.

-2 ( +5 / -7 )

For decade! How is the "present " economic condition? Please consider Mr.Abe, commoners don't feel better with their daily economy. Coming tax raising will be a big bomb. Please stop the violence to the weakness.

10 ( +10 / -0 )

Oh, yes!!

"Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe said on Wednesday that he was not considering raising the sales tax beyond 10% under his administration, and that he saw no such need for at least a decade."

Let us read between the lines (or better words in bolt). Is he planning to govern for another 10 years (or at least his party)?

Sounds like his buddy from the States, deDonnie Trumpless. But maybe I'm once again too picky?

7 ( +7 / -0 )

Whatever keeps you in power hey Abe.

8 ( +8 / -0 )

Is he planning to stay in power for another decade too? God help us! Though the wailing and gnashing of teeth over 2% is a bit extra.

4 ( +4 / -0 )

Japanese people are already overtaxed. If Abe really cares about this country and wants to make Japan Great Again, he should focus on the economy, and forget about his wet dreams of being America's war buddy (they already have one, it's called England).

Japan needs tax reduction, not tax increases. And when they do cut taxes, they shouldn't increase them elsewhere, but give the money back to the people. People need to retain a much bigger share of their own income.

The debate about this sales tax has been circulating in the media for more than an year. This reminds me of the Japanese series "Change" where the candidates would spend their entire time discussing pointless issues that the people watching didn't even understand. The question should not be if the sales tax should be 10% or lower, it should be - what does the government need the money for? Are the tax money collected from people spend effectively? Are people happy with the services they receive from the government through the tax money they pay? Should the government spend more on their behalf, or less? Are the services that the government provides to people better provided by the private sector or by the government? These are the questions that news anchors should be debating, not whether or not the tax increase should be 5 or 8 percent.

From what i can see, people are not happy with the services they are receiving, people are not happy with the way the government spends their money, and people do not want the government to tax them, they want to keep the money they earn and be free to spend them they way they want. Unfortunately there isn't a political party that i know of, maybe other than Ishin no Kai, that represent those policies. Japan needs a major economic and political reform, but there aren't lot of people advocating for one. There are some, but their arguments are too weak, and don't resonate with people.

13 ( +15 / -2 )

"Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe said on Wednesday that he was not considering raising the sales tax beyond 10% under his administration, and that he saw no such need for at least a decade."

> Let us read between the lines (or better words in bolt). Is he planning to govern for another 10 years (or at least his party)?

that's what raised my eyebrows. so he knows that he'll be in power a decade from now. And people call this a democracy.. pffft.

7 ( +8 / -1 )

Shinzo Abe said on Wednesday that he was not considering raising the sales tax beyond 10% under his administration, and that he saw no such need for at least a decade

Indeed he sees no need .....because HIS administration will be over in a couple of years...he will leave it to the next LDP muppet protege who will just say that circumstances have changed and it needs to be done for the ' good of the nation to secure pension funds due to 'unforseen circumstances , or some other such BS.

7 ( +7 / -0 )

Just election talk, that's all it is. As soon as the LDP control the diet again, he'll put it back on the agenda.

5 ( +5 / -0 )

Take a look at the graph in the link below here, tax revenues, including revenues from the consumption tax, are reaching record levels.

https://www.nippon.com/en/features/h00013/the-political-history-of-the-consumption-tax.html

But, the economy is still sluggish, wages stagnant, an aging population, (which means less overall revenue from income taxes) and a host of other problems, with a HUGE debt and Abe is already setting things up for an increase in maybe 10 years or so?

No thank you!

7 ( +7 / -0 )

Quick question. What will it take for everyone to wake up to the fact that there's no democracy at all in japan? Where's the opposing viewpoints on the news? Where are the opinion pieces from those well versed in good economic theory? Where's the opposing voice in the parliament? Well!?

15 ( +16 / -1 )

Aly RustomToday  07:50 am JST

And people call this a democracy..*

All that's democratic about Japan, and other countries, is that they need majorities in the Diet to get legislation passed. The elections certainly aren't, when politicians just need more votes than the other candidates to win.

8 ( +8 / -0 )

The sad thing is, Japanese people will buy it and vote for him again. There is no chance he will lose an election in the coming years.

9 ( +9 / -0 )

The sad thing is, Japanese people will buy it and vote for him again. There is no chance he will lose an election in the coming years.

Please, let's keep this straight. A very tiny portion of the people actually vote for Abe. They vote for their local representative, and not all of them seem to make the connection.

The polls show Abe's support dropping, but he wont lose, because even though the polls say one thing, the people luv their local LDP candidate and dont want to see them loose just to take down Abe!

11 ( +11 / -0 )

Abe won’t be in control of policy in the future so this is an empty statement.

4 ( +4 / -0 )

.

Puhleeeze !

And we are going to believe him !!!??

.

5 ( +5 / -0 )

He does know in ten years he will be hitting seventy, eighty odd leaving a legacy of debt.

recently someone pointed out that NZ with just 4 million people has a much lager level of happiness Japan with 124 million, seem to be constantly working and miserable, that's because of Shinzo and his tax grubbing party don't care. This happens when clueless entitled people benifit from a education system that purposely dumbs down the population. He can say anything and the people nod. Back to my phone.

5 ( +7 / -2 )

Sao Paulo state in Brazil has 18% of Sales Tax (VAT) for most goods. Brazil has nearly 60 types of different taxes that are created and applied in cities, states, nationwide, also depending on the type and size of business, industry. It is a mess, and due to the high amount of tax there is a big tax evasion as many decide to work informally, without any legal coverage as obtaining all necessary official licenses is also a great obstacle, bottleneck. Raising taxes is a bad idea. Government must be efficient, effective, must be able to provide the best services without burdening the society with heavy taxes.

7 ( +10 / -3 )

Tax revenues are at a record 60 trillion yen.

Government expenditures at a record 100+ trillion yen.

(hmmm.)

Outstanding central government debt of approximately 1,000 trillion yen - a QUADRILLION.

Shrinking, aging, population.

10 years from now, Government expenditures will be at a record 110+ trillion yen, tax revenues will have declined to 50-55 trillion yen, and public debt will be approximately 1,500 trillion yen. Back of an envelope. 

If consumption tax rates don't need to be hiked, or expenditures slashed right now, I wonder what makes Abe think that the time is 10 years from now. Or raather, I wonder if anyone in the entire country thinks he is serious.

5 ( +6 / -1 )

When the 10% does take effect, if it’s voted for, many will lose jobs, bonuses, raises, etc. Like always, Abe will depend on foreigners to buoy him up, whether workers, travelers, olympics, etc. Japan is stuck. No forward movement without foreigner money or people. They know it as much as they’ll deny it.

Foreigners will be milked for all they’re worth, whichever their category. Maybe the nouveau riche whalers can help.

3 ( +3 / -0 )

people will be poor for more one decade in Japan. Lead to shrink population again with such two digits bless.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

90% of the people here are headed for poverty in the next 25 years. Half that number are already there. Every tax increase will result in an equal or greater amount of negative growth in the economy. If you want economic growth, put money into the economy, don't take it out. You can't get blood from a stone. If you really want to do something about the 300% debt, raise cororate taxes - they aren't hiring - tax money held offshore by Japanese companies, introduce a tax on the sale of financial instruments, and impose a wealth tax on anyone who has 100 million in liquid assets - excluding thier primary residence.

8 ( +8 / -0 )

Outstanding central government debt of approximately 1,000 trillion yen - a QUADRILLION.

@ fxgai . Almost all of this debt is Japanese not foreign. Japanese government can repay it whenever it chooses. It's not a crisis. PM Abe is right when he says Consumption tax does not need to be raised beyond 10% in foreseeable future. Certainly NEVER 26% like these unelected OECD officials are pushing for. That will destroy business and the economy.

-9 ( +1 / -10 )

No Need to Raise Taxes ... One for the all-time whoppers.

But why should he care. He won't be around then anyway.

4 ( +4 / -0 )

Almost all of this debt is Japanese not foreign. 

Yes so foreigners needn't be concerned. It's Japan's issue.

However, I am living in Japan, as are 120+ million other people.

Japanese government can repay it whenever it chooses. 

By what means? Pay it back whenever, with money that it does not have? Or perhaps it can simply hike tax rates to procure the funds? Oh sorry, yeah, we can't do that can we.

How about repaying the banks who bought all the debt with your savings, with monopoly money? 

And then?

That will destroy business and the economy.

The root cause of the problem is the unsustainable budget practices, not the consequences of dealing with the problem.

8 ( +8 / -0 )

Whew! I was afraid it would go to 15% in another 3-5 years! No doubt it will go to 20% in 11 more years.

3 ( +3 / -0 )

OECD should keep out of Japan, 26% tax is Socialism, and will never be accepted. Good for PM Abe and Japan.

Your post was ok up to the word 'accepted'.

An old political trick is for the opposition or some other organisation (OECD) to posit an extreme view or recommendation (26% tax) so that when the ruling party introduces the new legislation (10% tax) it actually sounds reasonable in comparison. But that the 10%, or whatever they can get away with, is what was planned all along. It's called the Hegelian Dialectic and is a useful tool in the politicians' box of tricks.

10 ( +10 / -0 )

Is this his way of trying to make get elected repeatedly for the next 10 years? And has ANY politician kept their promise?

4 ( +4 / -0 )

Actually, there's no need to raise it to 10%. Return the money for the 140 jet fighters you're buying from the US and that will support pretty much everything for a while. But nah...

4 ( +5 / -1 )

He should make consumption tax 0% and just open hundreds of casinos as they are a tax on those who aren't too good at mathematics!

3 ( +3 / -0 )

Tax is important and can be put to good use. However, do not tax food, education, medicine. It is a sin.

5 ( +5 / -0 )

dry that one out and you could fertilize a lot of lawns, election coming by chance?

Sheesh that one gave me a good laugh.

3 ( +3 / -0 )

If I ran my household like the LDP, I'd probably be referred to prosecutors never to be seen again.

3 ( +3 / -0 )

What if instead of raising the taxes, all the political party officials lowered their monthly salary by 10%? Apparently Shinzo earns around 1580man per month, that's 15,800,000 yen per month. Does he really need that much per month, when most of his work expenses and such are already paid by tax paying people?

Instead of raising taxes for who-knows what, wouldn't it had been better to avoid spending all those billions on jet fighters?

2 ( +2 / -0 )

I believe the debate was whether or not to raise it to 10 percent in October. Not about 10 years.

Japanese politicians trying to change the debate. Funny thing is, it usually works.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

Would you buy a used car from this man? I think most would. He seems convincing.

The car itself might not run too well, though.

In the UK you have people like Jeremy Hunt promising to bring down consumption tax. In Japan you find politicians looking at Europe and drooling over huge consumption tax revenues. It's only a matter of time. 10 years? I doubt it.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Abe says no need to raise sales tax beyond 10% for decade.......

This statement is economically irresponsible.

All economies have to respond flexibly to al fiscal and monetary situations from a global perspective rather than attempting to second guess or control long term consumption tax measures.

Prime Minister Shinzo Abe needs to concentrate on the task at hand to create an economy that produces budget surpluses, year on year. Japan sovereign debt (250% of GDP) interest accounts for some 40% of the draft budget for fiscal 2019.

It is meaningless to differentiate servicing that debt, outside of an economics classroom the ownership, foreign or otherwise, the debt has to be financed and there are strict rules globally governing how a country economically manages their debt.

Pensions and basic health care guarantees cannot be financed with worthless pieces of paper

4 ( +4 / -0 )

Almost all of this debt is Japanese not foreign. Japanese government can repay it whenever it chooses. It's not a crisis. PM Abe is right when he says Consumption tax does not need to be raised beyond 10% in foreseeable future.

Delusion grandeur.

2 ( +2 / -0 )

"Read my lips: No new taxes!" How do you know when a politician is lying? Their lips are moving.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

If the sales tax was going to go up to 26%, does that mean that my nenkin and medical insurance will be lowered by that 26% too? Coz if not, as it is now between nenkin, national medical insurance and city/prefectural tax are kind of leaving a hole in my pocket. That combined with a 26% sales tax... I think that'd be it for me.

3 ( +3 / -0 )

Sorry but really ?

I know that for Japanese it sucks (for me it was paradise when I worked in Japan and only paid 20% income tax plus 8% sales tax)

Japan has the highest debt per Capita ....

Here in Germany income tax is at a maximum of 47% if I am not mistaken plus 19% sales tax ... that's a whooping 66% tax while Japanese have a maximum of 28? oder 30? all together so less then halv.

Of course the Companies would need to pay more if taxes get highered to much but it is not the Worlds end to pay a little bit more taxes to help your Country stay strong.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

This country is in so much trouble. They'll start talking about raising it to 15% immediately after the LDP secures the next election, say it's necessary for society, pass a record military budget, donate billions to nations that have nothing to do with us (but might support Japan's infrastructures some day... maybe).

If you haven't noticed over the past couple months a lot of vending machines have raised their prices to 160 per, let's say, tea, from 140. If you recall, it was raised to 140 when the tax was increased to 8% with the companies saying, "We cannot raise it by 3% tax because vending machines are not equipped to take 5 yen or 1 yen coins, so we are raising it to 10% now and will not raise it in the future." But when asked about the raise to 160, some have said it is to prepare for the tax increase and increased cost of product. Get ready for a whole lot more of that, and get ready for the government to start demanding you spend more, and than acting extremely surprised and baffled when people aren't.

5 ( +6 / -1 )

there is a lot of mixed feelings about raising taxes again, I can see why he wants to implement such a hike, but there are lots of down sides, one of them could be exports, unless exports will be at a lower rate, higher taxes will increase the price of goods, which means that Japanese goods will be less competitive in the global economy.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

If you dont provide the services why do we need taxes at all?

2 ( +2 / -0 )

it is not the Worlds end to pay a little bit more taxes to help your Country stay strong.

Tax revenues would have to increase by 66% to plug the fiscal deficit though, so this is quite a significant problem.

A combination of selective expenditure cuts, and tax hikes (I suggest bourne primarily by those who consume the most, while not complicating the tax system further), is the best course I can imagine.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

@smithinjapan - I noticed this and other scams when the tax went to 10%; another was to take a round-number price that had been tax-inclusive, and then add 8% to that, so something that had been 952 yen plus 5% tax (so 1000 yen tax-in) was now 1000 yen plus 8% tax.

Now at my job I'm seeing the next level of this scam: prices that are (round number plus 8%), like 2160 yen or 32,400 yen, on invoices with the 8% tax added to those!

This is what Abe wanted: the steady destruction of the working class's buying power through inflation and price increases, so that the massive debts his government continues to build every year decrease in value -- at the public's expense.

I can't wait until he's gone.

3 ( +3 / -0 )

Is there someone else to vote for? Please. Taxes up again no service in return. Waffling old men please change it for my grandchildrens sake.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

Here in Germany income tax is at a maximum of 47% if I am not mistaken plus 19% sales tax ... that's a whooping 66% tax while Japanese have a maximum of 28? oder 30? all together so less then halv.

While you are at it, why not make a comparison of the cost of basic commodities, foodstuffs, education, medical care, highway tolls, cost of having a car and cost of services offered by the government.

Kobe city started a few years ago fireworks events in the summer, it has gained popularity and became a crowd puller and what did the city do ? It has decided to build a fence and collect entrance fee.

3 ( +3 / -0 )

Kobe city started a few years ago fireworks events in the summer, it has gained popularity and became a crowd puller and what did the city do ? It has decided to build a fence and collect entrance fee.

That is not true. We have attended the firework show every year for more than 10 years.

There are set places in several location for people to view. There are some limited locations free for the disabled.

There’s also an area you can buy an advanced ticket for a seated area. This helps with the cost of the display. In 2017 for the 150th anniversary of the port we tried the seated area. Last year we went back to the free areas.

There are also many advantage points around Kobe, like Venus Point for watching the display.

The crowds have become too large for comfort and we won’t be attending again.

2 ( +2 / -0 )

Almost all of this debt is Japanese not foreign. Japanese government can repay it whenever it chooses. It's not a crisis.

You want to see Japan crash and sink? If the Japanese government even considered this the shock waves alone would send the country back to the dark ages, like forever!

The debt is held by using the money of the people! To pay it back would mean having to print money backed by nothing, creating hyper inflation of historical proportions. You would be paying probably 100 million yen for a 100 yen bottle of water.

You do not understand what you are saying when you make this comment here!

2 ( +2 / -0 )

@ AetherCzar

I think the amount is by year.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_salaries_of_heads_of_state_and_government

If Japan government need more money for the caring budget they can just make shakai hoken mandatory for every worker.

To avoid company avoiding it thanks to Uber like management make some fixed contribution and enforce what is to be considered as a non member of staff.

To preserve part time for housewifes, elders, students, ... they can make a lower rate for people working less than 20hours a week in a maximum of 5 shifts and which are part of Shakai hoken by another way : spouse, parents, enough years of employment out of previous work, another employment, ...

It is quite possible that company will choose to put their 29h59m staff full time and some willl loose job but wasn't the same government complaining about the lack of manpower ?

0 ( +0 / -0 )

The low consumption tax policy showed its limits.

As said in the article, the social services in Japan need money otherwise this country has a dark future with its aging population and its low birth rate.

No politician wants now to scare electors with a new tax raise but it seems necessary.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

If our tax money were not being stolen for personal use by politicians and the government would stop subsidizing completely needless doctor visits raising the sales tax would be completely unnecessary. Plus they should stop taxing food, particularly fresh food, and instead tax luxury goods higher.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

I guess Abe is thinking that in ten years most of the current crop of LDP voters will be dead from old age, so they will be reassured that the tax won't be raised again during their lifetimes.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

He has absolutely no way to know whether this is true or not unless his name is Nostradamus Shinzo. Who knows what will happen over the next 10 years. Are people falling for this? How does he get away with it? Answer: a compliant Japanese media.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

10% is low by European standards. In Britain VAT (a type of sales tax) is 20%. Norway and Sweden have 25% VAT rates.

I'm not saying this is good but in comparative terms, Japan is a low tax rate country.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

I don't think it will be necessary for 10 years," he said, when asked about the possibility of a further hike beyond the one scheduled for October.

Oh really? Please remind him about that 2, 3, or 4 years from now. There is no way in the world that they will leave the VAT at 10%. Giving politicians a taste of the easy money via VAT is like putting blood in the water of a shark tank. VAT is 25 % in Scandinavian countries right now, and only heading up.

10% my behind... lets remind Abe of his empty promise.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

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