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politics

Speculation rife over whether Abe will go ahead with sales tax hike

33 Comments
By Richard Carter

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The consumption tax is an eight-percent tax payable on goods and services at the point of sale.

Right, I think the readers here understand at least this much, about what the consumption tax is. WOuld have been nice to read about how this upcoming tax increase will be different.

It is not going to be an "across the board" increase, as there will be many items, particularly food and neccessities, that will be exempt from the increase. Not to mention the system that is going to be stupidly difficult to understand for many people, about the use of the "my number" card in receiving discounts or lower taxes on items that have been predetermined by the government.

There is a hell of a lot more information that needs to be disseminated about this increase.

10 ( +13 / -3 )

In April 1989, then-Prime Minister Noboru Takeshita ushered in Japan's first-ever sales tax -- at three percent -- and was forced to resign two months later amid plunging popular support and a separate corruption scandal.

Just because you want to make a point here, let's not re-write history in the process as well! Takeshita fell because of the scandal, the tax hike had almost nothing to do with his resignation. It was known as the "Recruit" scandal and again, the consumption tax had nothing to do with his resignation!

I was here, lived through it, and saw the news, all of it. There is no connection!

https://www.nytimes.com/1989/04/25/world/takeshita-resigns-as-japan-s-premier-over-gift-scandal.html

Think about the logic behind this, if people were really pissed off at Takeshita because of the tax increase, why the hell are they giving Abe a pass, TWICE, if he implements it this time!

Political history of the consumption tax here in Japan

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

5 ( +8 / -3 )

The nation's debt-to-GDP ratio -- a key indicator of financial health -- stood at 226 percent in 2018, according to the OECD, which noted it was "the highest ever recorded" in the group.

What this AFP article failed to mention, is that this so called "debt mountain" is almost all domestic, unlike other OECD nations. They make it seem like a crisis, when it is simply safe debt to Japanese.

-3 ( +4 / -7 )

Ganbare

What this AFP article failed to mention, is that this so called "debt mountain" is almost all domestic, unlike other OECD nations.

So is it debt or not and has it got to be repaid or not?

6 ( +9 / -3 )

The slippery slope downwards is soon to have another large dollop of grease slathered liberally on.

5 ( +5 / -0 )

Abenomics hasn't worked and the mere fact that no one even uses the word anymore is an indication of avoiding a failed policy. Increasing an across the board sales tax on an aging population living on a fixed income (pension) will only hurt the weakest. Japan also still hasn't modernized its wage structure so the young who are entering the work force and who are at the bottom of the wage scale will have even less disposable income due to an increase and will not be able to purchase large ticket items, let alone think of marriage and starting a family. No one knows what Trump is going to bring to the table when he visits, he may immediately enact the tariff on cars and if a conflict erupts with Iran, the price of oil will increase thus effectively hitting the econonomy where it hurts the most. Don't tax food, water and medicine, debate the details, and don't be lazy about it just for election's sake.

11 ( +11 / -0 )

They make it seem like a crisis, when it is simply safe debt to Japanese.

So in effect what you are saying here is that it is ok for someone in your family to take all your life's savings to spend as they want, with MAYBE a promise of repaying it to your great-grandchildren.

I dont want you in MY family!

11 ( +16 / -5 )

Hike the tax? Then raise the minimum wage. Simple.

Abe has promised a series of measures to mitigate the economic impact, including maintaining the rate at eight percent for food and non-alcoholic drinks.

Not only that. Diapers, baby food and clothing, clothes for children among other things shouldn't even be taxed at 8%. Incentive for more children. Oh and tax the cigarettes at 20%.

I dont want you in MY family!

None of us do.

10 ( +14 / -4 )

It is not going to be an "across the board" increase, as there will be many items, particularly food and neccessities, that will be exempt from the increase. 

Hah, don't worry, some retailers will sneakily increase the price of those items along with the others.

2 ( +4 / -2 )

Of course they will go ahead with it as planned. All this ‘speculation’ comes from people who are not even part of the planning. The tax hike will go through in September, the economic recession will slip even further down the rabbit hole and Abe and his cronies will blame international influences. Rewind, repeat.

8 ( +8 / -0 )

So under the LDP we have an increase in legally allowed excessive overwork, an urge to raise wages, well that's no working out. Premium Friday's again didn't work out. A flip flop attitude towards NK we won't talk untill our conditions are met, then unconditional talks. Which don't look like will ever happen. Yet to finalise a peace treaty with Russia. Change the constitution? Yet to meet anyone who considers that a priority. Granted I don't have a WW2 imperial uniform nor have visited Yashcuni. But a tax raise is needed to pay for the flamboyant government spending that is not transparent or even given a flippant justification.

7 ( +7 / -0 )

Yesterday’s unbelievable report about the economy expanding for the second straight quarter now makes a lot more sense.

They wanted some positive news to justify continuing with the tax hike.

9 ( +9 / -0 )

The consumption tax is an eight-percent tax payable on goods and services at the point of sale.

Everyone also needs to understand its applied at each point of sale along the supply chain , not just once at the final register....so goods will go up by more than just another 2 %, just like last time.

11 ( +12 / -1 )

Don't do it. It is that simple.

-2 ( +1 / -3 )

Everyone also needs to understand its applied at each point of sale along the supply chain , not just once at the final register....so goods will go up by more than just another 2 %, just like last time.

This is a very good point here, and it matters a lot! With all the middle men getting their cuts here, prices are going to rise a hell of a lot more than 2%

6 ( +8 / -2 )

I like how they are using the panicked shopping of a public anticipating a tax hike to justify the tax hike and desperately look for ways Abenomics has worked, when it is a clear failure. People are spending more because they think the tax will go up, and once it does, they will spend far less. I know the government is strapped for money, and we need to do something, but I suggest they stop increasing military spending to exponential levels, and stop donating money to land-locked African nations in order to get support for commercial whaling. Use the money at home, for social welfare costs. Cut spending on stupid stuff, too.

8 ( +9 / -1 )

it appeared set to go ahead

OK, go ahead, stifle the economy, idiots. How about cutting spending on boondoggles? Nah...

6 ( +6 / -0 )

Speculation of a tax increase certainly takes the focus off veterinary schools that we don't need or discounted land deals for Nippon Kaigie freinds. How about accountability transparent fiscal spending? But who am I to judge. Sadly my parents were not born into a system that rewards stupidity.

5 ( +6 / -1 )

They need the sales tax hike or else how will the government spend? Not spend? I don't think so

1 ( +2 / -1 )

Either revenue needs to increase or spending needs to be cut or there needs to be a combination of both.

Unfortunately, the current government has already stated that they will follow the paved road to hell by both increasing taxes and increasing spending (because it belives people are not smart enough to decide how to spend their own money.)

When interest rates move up, watch out Japan.

5 ( +5 / -0 )

Imagine how many senior citizens could be cared for by cutting PM Abe’s profligate international travel by half even?

Thousands at the very least!

5 ( +5 / -0 )

Sigh... Abe needs to be replaced with Koizumis son or Koike, Koizumi slashed taxes and built the economy properly, his son is taking over his legacy and economic plans

4 ( +4 / -0 )

@drlucifer So is it debt or not and has it got to be repaid or not?

Not necessarily in cash like debt by your and I. Government debt can also be paid back by economic growth. It seems the Abe government doesn't see economic grow coming to Japan or does it? That is the question the country is struggling with. The government does have other choices to help spur the economy.....but it has not been working.....

0 ( +0 / -0 )

as Fujimori says

4 ( +4 / -0 )

We can't afford any tax hike and will mean cutting back. 25% of taxes collected is used to service the national debt without even reducing the amount.

5 ( +5 / -0 )

All this overtaxing is the socialist ideology here among lpd members...

-2 ( +0 / -2 )

Oh no you bettah don't.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

'What this AFP article failed to mention, is that this so called "debt mountain" is almost all domestic, unlike other OECD nations. They make it seem like a crisis, when it is simply safe debt to Japanese.'

If it was that easy, everyone would be doing it. Subtract export income from the equation, which is looking increasingly likely with America finally waking up to the East Asian mercantilist caper, add the static birth rate and political resistance to meaningful reform; it’s highly likely that this desperation doubling down on the consumption tax with minimal compensatory offsets may well see the catatonic patient finally succumb.

2 ( +2 / -0 )

Abe is a spineless weasel who will jump at the slightest opportunity to avoid raising the consumption tax. However, the LDP have already started spending the money they expect to get from the higher tax (on free child care, free high school tuition etc.). If Abe shirks from raising the tax yet again he will have an even bigger deficit to contend with.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

Have to either repay or monetize the debt someday.  So either raise taxes, cut spending or print a mountain more of money.

2 ( +2 / -0 )

Japan is NOT nearly as ""safe"" as some think, even though most of the debt is local, as Proxy points out CORRECTLY:

When interest rates move up, watch out Japan.

Interest rates are insanely low now, NOW lets look at zichi's IMPORTANT point:

We can't afford any tax hike and will mean cutting back. 25% of taxes collected is used to service the national debt without even reducing the amount.

So...……..if interest rates creep up even a few percentage points than zichi's  25% will SKY ROCKET to insane levels!!

The ONLY logical thing to do is reduce SPENDING & to eliminate taxes on food & meds etc.

But this will never happen so we continue on the Highway to HELL!

3 ( +3 / -0 )

In addition, consumers will be offered incentives if they pay using cashless methods, as Japan seeks to wean itself off paper money.

Dont give up your paper money. Once you do that the government can control every aspect of your life

1 ( +2 / -1 )

Some entertaining comments on upping the tax from all the Diet members .. Please include your knowledge of exchequer borrowing requirements to run the country at the next extraordinary legislative assembly meeting

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

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