Japan Govt Adopts Record 101-T.-Yen Budget for FY 2019

Politics

Tokyo, Dec. 21 (Jiji Press)--The Japanese government adopted at a cabinet meeting on Friday a budget bill stipulating general-account spending of 101,456.4 billion yen in fiscal 2019 starting next April.

The spending amount hit a record high for the seventh straight year and exceeded 100 trillion yen for the first time on an initial budget basis, as the government plans to implement stimulus measures worth 2,028 billion yen to prevent the planned consumption tax increase in October next year from dampening the economy.

The budget expanded 3.8 pct from the initial budget for fiscal 2018 also because of rises in social security costs amid rapid population aging and defense expenditures to meet threats posed by China and North Korea.

According to the bill, general expenditures, or spending on policy measures, will total 61,963.2 billion yen, marking a rise of 5.2 pct due chiefly to an increase of 1,070.4 billion yen in social security costs to 34,058.7 billion yen, an all-time high.

The social security spending rise reflects natural growth of 476.8 billion yen, mainly for medical and nursing care expenses, and the allocation of 480.8 billion yen for a free preschool education program set to tap into consumption tax income to be generated after the tax rate hike from 8 pct to 10 pct and other measures.

[Copyright The Jiji Press, Ltd.]

Jiji Press