FOCUS: Some Policies of LDP Leadership Candidates Invite Skepticism

Politics

Tokyo, Sept. 27 (Jiji Press)--Key policies that have been put forward by the four candidates for president of Japan's ruling Liberal Democratic Party and hence prime minister include unique ones that are considered by many to be unfeasible.

Regulatory reform minister Taro Kono, who oversees Japan's novel coronavirus vaccine rollout, has backpedaled on his controversial proposal to create a minimum guaranteed pension program that would be financed entirely by tax revenue, which has met with skeptical reviews.

"I thought we had to discuss pensions. I don't necessarily stick to any specific idea," Kono, 58, said on a television program on Friday. The comments marked a stark contrast with his earlier remarks that a minimum guaranteed pension was "needed."

Kono's proposal called for revising the "kokumin nenkin" basic pension program, which is currently paid for equally by premiums and tax revenue, into one financed fully by consumption tax revenue in order to guarantee a certain amount of pensions to all citizens regardless of incomes.

A drastic hike of the consumption tax rate is seen as unavoidable for creating such a minimum guaranteed pension system.

[Copyright The Jiji Press, Ltd.]

Jiji Press