Possible to Give 100,000-Yen Handouts Fully in Cash: Kishida

Politics

Tokyo, Dec. 8 (Jiji Press)--Distributing planned 100,000-yen benefits per person aged 18 or under fully in cash will be possible, Prime Minister Fumio Kishida said at the Diet, the country's parliament, on Wednesday.

"While we'd like to see half of the amount provided in the form of shopping coupons (as originally planned) in principle, we also hope to allow the voucher portion to be handed out in cash depending on the circumstances at each municipality," Kishida told a plenary meeting of the House of Representatives, the lower chamber of the Diet.

"We will consider how we should operate the benefit program in detail after listening to opinions of local governments," he added.

Kishida's statements came in response to Constitutional Democratic Party of Japan leader Kenta Izumi's demand that the way to distribute the benefits be reviewed. The Lower House meeting was held for political party representatives to ask questions regarding Kishida's policy speech at the Diet on Monday. Wednesday was the first day of the three-day parliamentary question-and-answer sessions. Izumi was elected leader of the main opposition party late last month.

The benefit program is a centerpiece of the government's fresh economic package, which is partly aimed at helping ease the fallout of the novel coronavirus pandemic.

[Copyright The Jiji Press, Ltd.]

Jiji Press