Post-Abe Candidates Seek to Correct Concentration in Tokyo


Osaka/Tokyo, July 28 (Jiji Press)--Japanese ruling party bigwigs Shigeru Ishiba and Fumio Kishida, both seen as potential candidates to succeed Prime Minister Shinzo Abe, have voiced their thoughts on correcting the overconcentration in Tokyo.

In a lecture in the western Japan city of Osaka on Monday, Ishiba, former secretary-general of the Liberal Democratic Party, stressed the need for overhauling the tax system immediately to deal with the situation amid the novel coronavirus epidemic while stopping short of going into details.

Concentrating population and resources in Tokyo "was absolutely necessary" for the governments in the Meiji era as they tried to achieve the goals of bringing prosperity to the nation, strengthening its military at the time and nurturing industries in a short period of time.

But he added, "Our nation would be unable to survive unless we promote decentralization now as a national policy." Ishiba is expected to call for decentralization as a pillar in his policy platform for the next LDP leadership election.

At a news conference held at the LDP's headquarters in Tokyo the same day, Kishida, chairman of the party's Policy Research Council, said, "I will try to resolve the excessive concentration in Tokyo and revitalize regional communities using cutting-edge technologies and innovation."

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Jiji Press