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Japan’s Abe promises to implement economic policy

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BELFAST, Northern Ireland, June 19 – Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe(photo) stressed Tuesday that he is determined to thoroughly implement his economic policy, called Abenomics, Japan’s Jiji Press reported.

Shinzo AbeJapan’s economic situation “is improving steadily,” Abe told a news conference after the two-day Group of Eight summit in Lough Erne, a Northern Ireland resort.

“What is important now is to deliver steadily and confidently in an unwavering manner.

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“Japan’s economic policy has never attracted so much attention in recent years,” Abe said, adding that he feels “keen responsibility for ending deflation, restoring a strong economy and contributing to world economic growth.”

At the summit, concerns were expressed over Japan’s severe fiscal condition. To soothe such concerns, Abe emphasised his government will map out a detailed medium-term program this summer to reach Japan’s fiscal consolidation targets.

On the proposed hike in the consumption tax from five per cent to eight per cent in April 2014, the prime minister said he will make a final decision by scrutinising economic data for April-June.

Abe noted he achieved both of his main objectives of winning support from other G-8 leaders on Abenomics and showing Japan’s stance on the issues of North Korea’s nuclear development and abductions of Japanese citizens.

In their joint statement, the leaders urged North Korea to address the international community’s concerns over human rights issues including the abductions.

Abe said he led G-8 discussions on North Korea by emphasising the need for zero tolerance of the communist country’s possession of nuclear weapons and for the resolution of the abduction issue.

He also said the Japanese government will put safety first when deciding whether to approve a restart of any nuclear reactors other than the ones currently in operation.

The government will proceed with restart of reactors if the Nuclear Regulation Authority confirms that they satisfy Japan’s new safety standards, Abe said.

– BERNAMA