COVID-19 INFORMATION What you need to know about the coronavirus if you are living in Japan or planning a visit.
politics

Japan eyes 2nd extra budget to combat pandemic fallout

12 Comments
By Leika Kihara

Japan will take additional stimulus measures "swiftly" to combat the fallout from the coronavirus pandemic, Prime Minister Shinzo Abe said Monday, signaling readiness to compile a second supplementary budget during the current Diet session running through June.

The new package of steps would aim to cushion the blow to the world's third-largest economy, which is on the cusp of deep recession amid a plunge in global demand and a local state of emergency that has been extended through to the end of May.

Abe said the government will consider additional steps such as aid to firms struggling to pay rent, support for students who have lost part-time jobs, and more subsidies to companies hit by slumping sales.

"If we decide that additional steps are needed, we will take bold and timely action," Abe said in the Diet, when asked by an opposition lawmaker whether the government will compile a second extra budget to fund the additional steps.

"It's important to act with speed," he said, adding that the government was ready to compile the second extra budget in time to pass it through the current Diet session ending on June 17.

Abe declined to say how much the size of spending could be, saying the decision will depend how many prefectures will be able to lift state-of-emergency measures now applied nationwide.

In extending the measures to the end of May, the government said it would reassess the situation on May 14 and possibly lift them earlier for some prefectures.

"We will do our utmost to help companies sustain their businesses and protect jobs," Abe said, adding the government will "act swiftly" taking into account proposals made by ruling and opposition lawmakers.

Japan compiled a record 111.4 trillion yen economic stimulus package in April that focused on cash payouts to households and loans to small businesses hurt by the pandemic.

Ruling coalition lawmakers have ramped up calls for more assistance, as the government's decision to extend the state of emergency heightens risks of more bankruptcies and job losses.

In a sign of the rising demands from politicians, opposition lawmaker Yuichiro Tamaki urged Abe to deploy fresh spending of 100 trillion yen funded by a 100-year"coronavirus" bond.

Many analysts, however, expect any additional spending to be fairly small given Japan's already huge public debt that is twice the size of its economy.

Chotaro Morita, chief bond strategist at SMBC Nikko Securities, expects the size of direct spending funded by a second extra budget to be worth 3-4 trillion yen.

"The size of a second extra budget will be smaller than the first one. Even so, additional bond issuance is unavoidable," said Katsutoshi Inadome, senior fixed income strategist at Mitsubishi UFJ Morgan Stanley Securities.

Japan's economy likely shrank for a second consecutive quarter in the first three months of this year, a Reuters poll showed, meeting the definition of a recession as the pandemic crushed consumption and business activity.

© Thomson Reuters 2020.

©2020 GPlusMedia Inc.

12 Comments
Login to comment

Swiftly? I have not even received an application to apply for the first payment they promised. The only swift thing they have done is raise our taxes last year.

8 ( +8 / -0 )

Many analysts, however, expect any additional spending to be fairly small given Japan's already huge public debt that is twice the size of its economy.

Is it REALLY debt when more than half of it is owed to yourself?

2 ( +3 / -1 )

Swiftly? Happens for government friends tax payers swiftly means months of waiting? Got your masks yet? Got you check to donate for your rent yet? Bumbling old men bumble along. Rest of us have a life.

6 ( +6 / -0 )

Is it REALLY debt when more than half of it is owed to yourself?

And you own the machine that prints the money the debt is denominated in? Answer: Nope.

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

swiftly?oh man give me a break...

2 ( +2 / -0 )

Swiftly for these people is wandering shuffling from one room to another that can take months. Then they forget their nappies. So swiftly takes on a prolonged meaning.

2 ( +2 / -0 )

Dango bongToday 04:10 pm JST

Swiftly? I have not even received an application to apply for the first payment they promised. The only swift thing they have done is raise our taxes last year.

As for the application they are not sent yet. Refer to this

https://tokyopast3.com/coronavirus-cash-payout-tokyo/

Also keep in mind that now each member of parliament will now get a 3 million yen bonus

https://shanti-phula.net/ja/social/blog/?p=235665

2 ( +2 / -0 )

Got my money on the 8th applied for it on the 1st online. I say that is pretty swift, saved my business. Didn't need to close down, and didn't need to lay off my 1 staff member, myself. Thx stimulus for the free 2,000,000 yen. Stimulate more please!

1 ( +1 / -0 )

I think that Japan is very weak to the foreigners' pressures, therefore, if you have complaints to the Japanese government, the public demonstration may be very effective.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Consider? Act. Do.

Abe has no idea what swiftly means

0 ( +0 / -0 )

I got my car tax demand last week-no delay there...

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Workers: Get to the back of the line!

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Login to leave a comment

Facebook users

Use your Facebook account to login or register with JapanToday. By doing so, you will also receive an email inviting you to receive our news alerts.

Facebook Connect

Login with your JapanToday account

User registration

Articles, Offers & Useful Resources

A mix of what's trending on our other sites