Japan Consumers Unaware of Gasoline Subsidy Impact 1 Yr On


Tokyo, Jan. 30 (Jiji Press)--Many Japanese consumers are still unaware of the impact of a massive government subsidy program to curb retail gasoline prices, although one year has passed since its launch.

The program, which started as a temporary measure Jan. 27 last year, has been repeatedly extended and expanded. The total spending on the program, now set to expire at the end of September, will reach 6.2 trillion yen.

The program to lower retail prices of gasoline, kerosene, fuel oil and gas oil goes against decarbonization efforts. But it is uncertain when Japan can end it.

"Customers who refuel do not realize how much the government is subsidizing. They always complain that gasoline prices are too high," said a manager of a gas station in the village of Yamanakako, Yamanashi Prefecture, west of Tokyo.

Initially, the government set the cap of subsidies paid to oil wholesalers at 5 yen per liter. But the cap was raised to 25 yen in March and to 35 yen in April after crude oil prices surged due to Russia's invasion of Ukraine.

[Copyright The Jiji Press, Ltd.]

Jiji Press